A CANCER survivor from Basildon will be running the London Marathon with his wife to raise money to help children with cancer.

Emma and Lee Franklin, of Quilter Straight, Basildon, will take on the tough challenge on April 28, which will see them run 26.2 miles.

Mrs Franklin, 40, has been working as a paediatric nurse for several years, including three years at Basildon Hospital, meaning the charity, Children with Cancer UK, is very close to her heart.

Mr Franklin, 42, was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma at the age of 26, and went through three types of chemotherapy before having a stem cell transplant leading to him going into remission.

He has also suffered from Evan’s syndrome, a rarer disorder where the immune system destroys the body’s red blood cells, three years ago.

Mrs Franklin said the couple, along with her brother, are now determined to give something back to all those who suffer from cancer, having experienced the heartache and pain of going through it themselves.

She said: “I was at Basildon Hospital for three years and now I’m a nurse with the North East London Foundation Trust, meaning I’m out and about in the community caring for children.

“We’re really fortunate to be in this position.

“Lee was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma back in his 20s and has since had to endure Evan’s Syndrome, but managed to live through both. It’s an utter miracle he’s still with us.

“The children I’ve worked with have been a very, very strong inspiration, we really wanted to do something great for them and others.

“I’ve worked with some who had various types of cancer who have been through lots of chemotherapy, and despite that whenever you greet them they’re always so happy and upbeat. It’s incredible how strong they are.”

This will be the couple’s first marathon and they will be putting themselves through a rigorous training regime, with the aim of raising more than £2,000 for the charity.

Mrs Franklin added: “It’s going to be very, very hard. We’re only novice runners, but we want to hit the pavement and give it everything and raise as much as we can.

“Cancer destroys lives, but we’re still here and going strong, the more we can do to fight it the better.”

The couple have raised more than £840 so far. To donate, visit www.uk.virginmoneygiving.com and search for Lee Franklin.