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Mothers and daughters

Clare and Rebecca

A sporty Nailsea mum is running the Brighton marathon for the Wallace and Gromit’s Grand Appeal as her big thank you to Bristol Royal Hospital for Children for taking such good care of her daughter.

Clare Elswood, aged 45, will be running the challenging 26.2 miles through the city centre passed the royal Brighton Pavilion and then out to the South Downs with sweeping views of the English Channel on Sunday, April 14.

Daughter Rebecca is a top gymnast who was due to compete in a national competition for Alchemy Trampoline & DMT Club only three days before her emergency admission to hospital last November.

Luckily Rebecca, 15, was home for Christmas but it turns out the Nailsea School student had a burst appendix and she spent four weeks at the city centre hospital – two in the intensive care unit.

Clare is a platform consultant for pension, insurance and investment company Aegon.

She said: “I cannot thank the nurses and other medical teams enough for the kindness that has been shown to both Rebecca and us as a family.

Brighton Marathon

“I wasn’t going to run for a charity when I entered the Brighton Marathon, but it goes without saying that I will now be running for Wallace and Gromit’s Grand Appeal.

“The charity provides free accommodation to parents who need it while their children are in hospital, vital medical equipment and funds to make each ward a more appealing place for children to stay while in hospital.”

Nailsea district nurses even came out to treat Rebecca at home on Christmas and Boxing days as she was on a prolonged course of antibiotics.

While Rebecca was in hospital with mum at her side almost 24/7 family and a huge group of Nailsea friends rallied round to support them from daily food packages, dog-sitting for Monty, hospital visits, messages of support and get-well cards.

Driving instructor dad Carey, 50, said: “I want to say a massive thank you to absolutely everyone who has helped us out during this really difficult period.”

Brother Cameron, 12, moved in temporarily with his grandparents John and Carol Murray while dad was busy working and ferrying visitors to the hospital where mum was ‘camping’ for the duration of Rebecca’s prolonged stay.

Clare who has set a target to raise £1,500 will be accompanied by fellow Nailsea Running Club friend Emma Caldwell on the Sussex marathon.

To sponsor Clare who has already started her training regime to ensure she is super fit for April click HERE.

  • Below is a story about Rebecca's BFF who is in the same tutor group at Nailsea School and was the first classmate to visit her in hospital, we hear the mums are now BFFs thanks to being introducted by their daughters! 

Clare on the run....jpg
PHOTOS: Top Clare on a run, Rebecca with medal and Monty about to go on a run
UPDATE MAY 2019: The run got run after many a long hour in training and more than £3,000 was raised. Clare said: "So chuffed to have raised such a fantastic amount for a cause so close to my heart. I’ll be having my big cheque moment at the end of May and hopefully be able to do it with some of the nurses that took such good care of Rebecca." And she did...

Kate and Emelia

A Nailsea mother and daughter tap dancing twosome have won medals in an international dance competition on the continent.

Mum Clare Elswood and Kate Nurminen, aged 45, and daughter Emelia, 15, competed in the World Tap Dance Championships in Germany.

They were both part of Tap Attack – the official UK tap dancing troupe – which comprises of 49 dancers from across the UK.

Overall Tap Attack won five world titles, three silvers and four bronze medals.

Emelia, who attends Adele Stitch School of Dance in Nailsea, picked up one of the bronze medals as part of the junior formation group.

She was also selected for the junior female solo.

Kate said: “It was a real honour to be chosen.

“She came 12th which we were extremely chuffed about.”

But glory goes to Kate who in her first attempt won a gold medal in the adult small group.

Emelia a gold medallist in 2017 has been part of Tap Attack for more than a year but this year the Wiltshire-based dance company decided to enter an adult team.


Kate said: “As it was a section they hadn’t competed in before parents who have danced in the past were asked to audition and Emelia persuaded me into doing it.

“It was a tough two-and-a-half-hour audition, but I made the cut along with six others to form a ‘small group’.”

The GB team is self-funding, so they set up GoFundMe pages for help with expenses and were also supported by Nailsea Community Trust.

Kate said: “It is not cheap, training costs, travel to Swindon every weekend to train, travel to Germany, accommodation, costumes and entry fees.”

As well as dancing Emelia had extra pressure as she is taking her GCSEs this year at Nailsea School.

Up and coming dancer is younger brother Sammy, 11, is also at Nailsea School and a member of The Adele Stitch School of Dance where Emelia takes ballet, tap and modern dance classes.

While Kate, who with husband Marko run a photographic editing business, enjoys Flamenco classes at Backwell - solely she added ‘for fun’.

Team GB head coach Jo Scanlan said: “We knew this year was going to be a tough year, but our dancers fought their way through the rounds and achieved exceptional results.”

“The team have been very successful over the past few years and returning to the world championships as the reigning champions brings extra pressure and intense competition.”

The 2018 International Dance Organisation world tap championships attracts nearly 1,400 dancers from 19 countries which include the US, Canada, Mexico, Croatia.

And for 2019?

Kate added: "We will have to wait until June to find out whether we will audition again for this years competition.

"Emelia is hoping to go away to dance college but until she auditions we won’t know that either."

kate dance troupe.jpg
PHOTOS: Top Kate with Emelia and Kate with her Tap Attack formation team
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