A CREWKERNE headteacher is set to conquer the London Marathon 12 months after his friend and colleague died from a sudden heart attack.

Carl Winch, who has been headteacher of Maiden Beech Academy since April 2016, will be taking on the epic 26.2mile route to raise money for Asthma UK.

This week marks a year since David Carter, headteacher of St Bartholemew’s First School in Crewkerne, died.

He is also running in memory of his dad Frank, who died in 1988 and suffered from asthma throughout his life.

Mr Winch said: “David’s death came as a huge shock to us all. He was a lovely man and a fantastic headteacher.

“David had taken up running himself, and we had spoken about joining a local running club.

“About a year ago I started running and throughout last summer I ran the 5km Parkrun at Montacute House every Saturday morning.

“I became well and truly bitten by the running bug and last September ran my first 10km race.

“I had always wanted to run the London Marathon ever since watching the inaugural race on TV back in 1981, so I applied for a charity place.

Carl is hoping to raise £2,000 for Asthma UK, which offers support for 5.4million people living with the condition.

He added: “I was delighted when Asthma UK approached me to run for their team. I have been asthmatic since I was 18 and a number of children and staff at Maiden Beech suffer from this chronic condition, so it is a great cause to support.”

Carl’s marathon effort is not the only fundraiser to be held in memory of Mr Carter.

In February, the school held a Valentine’s disco to raise funds, and on April 19, to mark the first anniversary of Mr Carter’s death, they are having a sponsored walk, the Maiden Beech Mega-Marathon, to help reach the fundraising goal.

Mr Winch said: “I have never attempted anything like this before so the training has been a challenge, but asthma is a cause close to my heart.

“I feel proud to be running in memory of both David and my father and will focus on this when the going gets tough during the race.

“I have set myself the additional challenge of finishing the course in less than four hours.”