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Exeter prisoners on the run

City Community Trust team prepares to leg it

Wardens in virtual 5k too!

Three prisoners at HMP Exeter are joining five wardens  on a socially distanced 5k sponsored run. 

They'll be belting around the prison’s exercise yard during a lunch break over the weekend, raising money for Exeter City Community Trust, the charity partner of Exeter City Football Club.

Since the lockdown, the charity has been delivering food and medication to isolated and vulnerable people across Exeter. It is holding the Take Five event to raise funds to support its community work. Entry is also open to the public to take part, run and record a 5k in their own time over this weekend and aim for a place on the leaderboard.

Mike Reece, prison officer at HMP Exeter who specialises in physical education, said: "We have worked with the team from City Community Trust for a couple of years. The project they were delivering, before it was halted, was about using the power of sport and football to help reduce reoffending, develop employability skills and mentor prisoners once they leave the prison.

"A couple of the lads who were on the course had asked if they could do something to raise money for charity locally, and this seemed like a great cause to support.’

The staff will be ensuring the social distancing guidelines are adhered to during the event. Mr Reece added: ‘We will be using the main exercise yard and it will take place over the lunch period when prisoners are in their cells, so we will follow all the guidelines about keeping safe. All the staff taking part are doing it in their own time as well.’

The prisoners have asked fellow inmates to sponsor them to take part in the event with all proceeds being raised going to City Community Trust.

Jamie Vittles, chief executive of City Community Trust, will also be going to prison to take part. He said: ‘Take Five is our first virtual event and we’re really grateful for the support we’ve received. I’m sure it’s not simple to stage something like this in the prison, so we’d really like to thank Mike and the PE staff for enabling this.’ 

The event has also had some high profile entrants, including the charity’s new patrons, the Earl and Countess of Devon, and Exeter City FC manager Matt Taylor and members of the first team squad. 

To take part visit:  https://exetercct.org/take5/

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