It's what friends are for

When mum-of-two Joanne Smith was diagnosed with breast cancer her friends did more than just offer their support.

When mum-of-two Joanne Smith was diagnosed with breast cancer her friends did more than just offer their support.

Julie Cornish and Wendy Robison pulled on their trainers and took to the road in their first Great North Run.

And they are about to compete in their second half marathon after both scooped sought-after places with The Journal.

Around 50,000 runners are expected to take part in this year's challenge on Sunday, September 30.

Thousands were disappointed when their names weren't picked out of the ballot, but The Journal managed to secure the final 200 places.

Mrs Cornish, from Wyndley Close, Whickham, Gateshead, said:

"We didn't get in to the ballot so we just thought we may as well try through The Journal and we're so chuffed we landed a place. Last year was great fun, the atmosphere was amazing when people cheer you on.

"It's fantastic when you go over the Tyne Bridge and see the Red Arrows."

The pair, both 38, raised just under £500 last year for charity Breast Cancer Campaign. Mrs Cornish and Mrs Robison train together four times a week and they completed the Race For Life and the Blaydon Races earlier this year.

They hope to smash their current record of 1hr 52 by five minutes.

Last year they wore pink T-shirts with a picture of Mrs Smith attached.

They have also launched a series of fundraising events to boost their cash total.

Mrs Cornish said: "Until you know someone close to you and you feel it first hand then it's only then when you realise how important supporting this cause is.

"All of our children are at the same school and I've known Joanne since our sons were in nursery."

Mrs Smith, 36, who underwent a double mastectomy in March 2005, said she was proud to call the pair her friends.

The mum-of-two, from Dykenook Close, Whickham, said: "They are absolutely fantastic friends, not just with fundraising but also with support they haven given to me and my family."

Is your name on the list?

Timothy Peter Leach, Gateshead;

Richard John Agan, Alnwick;

Kevin Blyth, Sunderland;

Carol Ann Reed, North Shields;

Paul Cowie, Walker;

Katie Hunter, Crawcrook;

Anthony James Humble, Jarrow;

Philip Stevens, Gosforth;

Andrew McKegney, Wylam;

Andrew Thornber, Gosforth;

Andrew Barker, Ashington;

Neil Coulson, Whickham:

David Forster, Gateshead;

Kevin Lee, Gateshead;

Michael Dawson, Denton Burn;

Tracy Ann Coxon, Alnwick;

Carole Ball, Washington;

Wendy Robison, Whickham;

Geoffrey Minto, Red House Farm, Gosforth;

William Parker, East Boldon;

Dean Andrews, Whitburn;

Karen Millican, Durham;

Rosie Carr, Belsay;

Victoria Patterson, Westmoor;

Janet Dodds, Cramlington;

Gillian Boyle, Whickham;

Helen Oakley, Slaley;

Linda Pringle, Bedlington;

Anne Dawson, Denton Burn;

Nicholas Hoenich, Jesmond;

Chris Barrett, Pelaw;

Helen Bell, High Heaton;

Paul Hillam, Leicester;

Timothy Pendleton, Manchester;

Suzanne Sharkey, Jesmond;

Anna Gumley, Kingston Park;

Robert George, Felton, Morpeth;

Fred Thurgood, Red Row, Morpeth;

Diedrie Kempson, Stocksfield;

Jake Singh, Sunderland;

Shaun Mewnes, Seaham;

Victoria Hunter, Belford;

Peter Toomer, Swalwell;

Keith Landles, Gosforth;

Neil Ramsay, Gosforth;

Helen Kelly, Jesmond;

Jamie Reed, South Shields;

John Hill, Brandling Park;

Susan Lee, Simonburn, Hexham;

Colin Willis, Consett;

Michael Coxon, Washington;

Sue Urwin, Ebchester;

Lee Hindmarch, Shinley Row;

Graham Clark, Chester-le-Street;

Lynn Watson, Wolsingham;

Alison O'Hara, Gosforth;

Mark Carr, North Shields;

Jacqueline Woods, Jarrow;

David Armstrong, Chester-le-Street;

Simon Reynolds, Boldon;

Peggie Thomas, Mayfair Gardens;

David Fitzpatrick, Bensham;

Julie Cornish, Whickham;

Anna Henry, Alnwick;

Thomas Fowler, Alnwick;

Lewis Ryan, Fulwell;

Darren Chapman, Birtley;

Steven Pearce, Lobley Hill;

Derek Croasdale, Hexham;

Richard Ford, Ponteland;

Jackie Chater, Monkseaton;

Ruth Wake, Whitley Bay;

David Hewitson, Woodside;

Brian Anderson, Jarrow;

Nicola Johnson, Gosforth;

Jennifer Tull, South Shields;

Marcus Curtis, Naisberry Park;

John Morrison, Chester-le-Street;

John Simpson, South Pelaw;

Philip Watson, Hexham;

Neil Bygate, N Yorks;

Jill Henderson, Cramlington;

Fiona Gardiner, Woodstone Village;

May Carr, Silksworth, Sunderland;

Jaqueline Williamson, Ryhope;

Paul Potts, High Heaton;

Tora Munnelly, Jesmond;

Linsey Elliott, South Shields;

Benjamin Cottam, Gateshead;

Anne Goodwin, Fenham;

Nina Sanderson, Felton, Morpeth;

David Bee, Stanhope;

Christine Bee, Stanhope;

Robert Hetherington, Washington;

Douglas Nicholson, Whitley Bay;

Andrew Barrass, Walker;

Michael Chambers, Newbiggen Hall;

Kate Elmy-Tolic, Scotts House Farm;

David Walter, Chester-le-Street;

Janet Martin, Wolverhampton;

Antonia Dimambro, Kenton Bank Foot;

Samantha Nicholson, Hebburn;

Michael Brodie, Tynemouth;

Craig Willis, Ebchester;

Tina Pringle, Edinburgh;

Helen Gibson, East Herrington;

Lynne Nettleton, East Boldon;

James Hume, Rothbury;

David Best, Consett;

Sophie Milburn, Stocksfield;

Peter Dodds, Morpeth;

Kirsty Wesencraft, Newcastle;

Jane Hardy, Alnwick:

Joanne Woollett, Alnwick;

Alison Dargie, Gosforth;

Alice Wiseman-Ord, Sunderland;

David Parry Williams, Sunderland;

Jonathan Watson, Ponteland;

Jon Punshon, Chapel Park, Newcastle;

Alan Stirling Dickinson, Jesmond;

Iain Flowers, Killingworth;

Anita Courtney, Benton;

Neil Alan Turner, Whitley Bay;

Stephen John Bowman, Consett;

Stanley Tweedy Lamb, North Shields;

Mark Sowerby, Chester le Street;

Keith Rix, North Shields;

Shirley Green, Cochrane Park;

Paul McGargle, Low Fell;

Denise Clark, Cleadon Village;

Margaret Dockey, North Shields;

Nicola White, Morpeth;

David White, Morpeth;

Norman Dodd, Whickham;

Tracey Jayne Goodall, Wakefield;

Patrick Matheson, Wooler;

Sarah Matheson, Wooler;

Camilla Matheson, Wooler;

Craig Beeby, Cramlington;

David William Welsh, Sunderland;

Kate Sudweeks, Jarrow;

Ian Whitfield, Monkseaton;

Melvyn James Carey, Fenham;

Nicholas Mattheson

Heatherly Hall Farm, Wooler;

Christopher Brolly, Hexham;

Aidan Brolly, Hexham;

Sean Alan Gregg, East Boldon;

Sarah Jane Taylor, Ashington;

Derak John Getlevog, Walkerdene, Newcastle;

Theresa Brolly, Hexham;

Caroline Campbell, Gosforth;

William Tarbit, Cramlington;

Richard Andrew Lowson Smith, Sunniside;

Maria Burn, Whitley Bay;

Philip Wilkinson, Washington;

Suzanne Milward, Morpeth;

Richard Hughes, Whickham;

Stephanie Elana Holman, Boldon Colliery;

Robert Stormont, Sunderland;

Kathryn Ely, Dinnington;

Ian Leslie Boyd, Kenton;

Kirsty Cessford, Sunderland;

Philip James, Blaydon;

Amy Turner, Wallsend;

Robert Chilton, Springwell, Gateshead;

Joanna Cais, Blaydon;

James Nixon, Kent;

Rosie Donald, Ponteland;

Andrew Archibald, Wooler;

Michael Joyce, Chester-le-Street;

Jonathan McAndrew, Longbenton;

Gary Thorpe, North Shields;

Andrew Reynolds, Whitley Bay;

Susan Kay, Consett;

Nichola Hardy, Woolsington;

Matthew Wayman, Corbridge;

Alan Wilkinson, Washington;

Frances Gray, Longhorsley;

Stephen Clelland, Washington;

Paul Jobson, North Shields;

Jamie Leitch, Kenton;

James Martin, Bedlington;

Dave Arnott, Seghill;

Martin Campbell, Cramlington;

Maureen Scott, South Shields;

Graeme Scott, South Shields;

Carl Ince, Ponteland;

Paul Oley, South Shields;

Joseph McLeod, South Gosforth;

Jose Hanandez, East Boldon;

Stephanie Hay, East Boldon;

Alexandra Turbitt, South Shields;

Louise Cochran, Killingworth;

Steven Kelso, Walker;

Darren Fawcus, Park Road;

Susan Riddle, North Shields;

Alan Milne, Westmoor;

Evelyn Smee, Fenham;

Andrew Liddle, Chelmsford;

Geoffrey Hall, Hexham.

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
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Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer