A BICESTER bomb disposal soldier has finished a gruelling ultra-triathlon to raise money for two charities close to his heart.

Warrant Officer Class Two (WO2) Si Hannaford swam 21 miles at DDS Portsmouth, then cycled 1,000 miles from Land’s End to John O’Groats and finally ran 756 miles from John O’Groats to Oxfordshire in 26 days.

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He completed the challenge on Armed Forces Day, June 26, crossing the line at Camper King HQ in Banbury.

The 43-year-old participated in the ultra-triathlon named #FelixTri26, to raise £100,000 for two charities.

The first is Felix Fund, the bomb disposal charity which supports serving personnel and veterans, providing financial assistance and welfare support to those who have conducted or assisted with bomb disposal and search duties.

The other charity is the Hummingbird Centre, a cancer support centre based in Launton, near Bicester.

As part of the event, Mr Hannaford ran the first mile of his 756-mile run in a NP Aerospace bomb suit, completing the challenge in 13 minutes.

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The soldier said: “It’s been a challenge like no other and being able to finish on Armed Forces Day in front of friends and family is just incredible. When I took on the challenge, I knew it was going to be hard and there’s been blood, sweat and tears along the way.

“Seeing the messages and donations come in whilst I’ve been putting the miles in and knowing how much of a difference the funds will make has kept me going. I can’t thank those who’ve donated enough.”

Last year Mr Hannaford ran 26 marathons in 26 days on a treadmill and raised £4,000 for the NHS and Felix Fund, which supported him after tours of Afghanistan, Bosnia, Kosovo, and Northern Ireland.

Melanie Moughton, CEO of Felix Fund, said: “Si’s achievement is beyond the belief. It’s been amazing to see him power on throughout the challenge, showing what he’s really made of. In addition to his remarkable achievement last year, we’re incredibly grateful for the work he has done for the Felix Fund.”

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So far, more than £7,000 has been raised in total. The fundraising pages are still open and donations can be made to Felix Fund at justgiving.com and the Hummingbird Centre at uk.virginmoneygiving.com.

Si has gained sponsorship for the event from Camper King, the Aardvark Group, NP Aerospace and Pearson Engineering, all of which has enabled his ultra-triathlon to go ahead.