LOCAL fundraisers for a charity that provides nursing to terminally ill patients are urging people to get sporty for their cause.

A team of runners have already signed up to run the first ever Dorchester Marathon for the Marie Curie charity and members of the local fundraising group are keen to recruit more.

They are also urging people to make a splash for the charity by diving into a Swimarathon event in Dorchester in April.

The Dorchester Marathon, which has been organised by White Star Running and the Dorchester Casterbridge Rotary Club, is being held on May 28 and offers a full marathon or half marathon route.

Chairman of the fundraising group Richard Crosby said that he was delighted four runners had already come forward to run for the charity but the group has a number of Marie Curie jerseys for people taking part and are keen to get as many signed up as possible.

He said: "Obviously we would like many more to support us by raising sponsorship for nurses in Dorset."

Prior to the marathon challenge the fundraisers are also urging swimmers to show their support by taking part in the charity's Swimarathon.

There will be events all over the country to raise funds for Marie Curie with swimmers clocking up as many lengths as they can.

Sessions are being held at the Dorchester Sports Centre on Saturday, April 8 from 4pm to 7pm and from 9am to noon on Sunday, April 9.

All levels of fitness and swimming abilities are invited to take part, either as individuals or as teams.

The funds raised will support Marie Curie's work in Dorset, with the 108 nurses in the county providing care for more than 1,000 terminally ill patients last year.

It is also a busy time for the local fundraising group as they prepare for the Marie Curie Great Daffodil Appeal, the charity's main fundraising drive that runs throughout March.

Other events in the pipeline for the charity include a pancake race at the Borough Gardens, which will be attended by the mayor on Tuesday, February 28, and a Great British Tea Party at Mintern House on Sunday, June 25.

Anyone interested in running the Dorchester Marathon or the half marathon route for Marie Curie can visit dorchestermarathon.co.uk

For more details on the Swimarathon event visit swimarathon.org and for information on Marie Curie's Great Daffodil Appeal visit mariecurie.org.uk

Anyone looking to get involved with local fundraising efforts, or to find out more about local events, can contact Mr Crosby on richard.crosby2@me.com or on 07879 692369.