Our Patrons

Since the launch of the Jane Tomlinson Appeal back in 2002 we have been very lucky to receive an incredible level of support from both fundraisers and patrons alike.

Thanks to the support of people all over the world, to date over £10m has been raised through Jane's Legacy.


Paula Radcliffe

The fastest female marathon runner in history demonstrated her commitment to the Jane Tomlinson Appeal in 2010 when she took part in the Leeds 10K - while pregnant with her second child.

The determination of Paula Radcliffe MBE to take part in the event reflected her respect and admiration for what Jane achieved during her life.

The pair met when Paula presented Jane with the Helen Rollason Award, given for outstanding achievement in the face of adversity, at the 2002 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Awards.

A member of the English Athletics Hall of Fame, Paula set her world record of 2hrs 15mins 25secs at the 2003 London Marathon, a race she has won three times. She is also a three-time winner of the New York Marathon.


Paula Radcliffe


Chrissie Wellington

Norfolk-born triathlete Chrissie Wellington is one of the finest endurance athletes the UK has ever produced.

She was the World Ironman Champion in 2007, 08, 09 and 2011. Chrissie, who was the Sunday Times Sportswoman of the Year in 2009, was awarded the MBE in 2010 for her outstanding achievements.

She has helped raise substantial sums of money for the Appeal through events such as Run With Chrissie in 2011 and the Paris to London Challenge a year later.

Chrissie retired from professional triathlon racing at the end of December 2012.


Chrissie Wellington


Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson

One of the United Kingdom's most successful disabled athletes, Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson is a long-time supporter of the Jane Tomlinson Appeal.

During her glittering athletic career, she won 16 Paralympic medals including 11 golds, held over 30 world records and won the London Marathon six times between 1992 and 2002. She was created a Life Peer in 2010.

In 2000 Tanni won the BBC Sports Personality Helen Rollason Award, given for outstanding achievement in the face of adversity. Jane received the prestigious award two years later.



Ian Kirke

When retired Rugby League star Ian Kirke urges people to support the Jane Tomlinson Appeal they tend to listen. Standing 6ft 5in tall, he certainly has presence in his role as a patron of our charity.

Ian, former Leeds Rhinos player, who has won five Grand Finals, was among a number of Rhinos and Leeds United players that helped launch the 2013 Leeds 10K which he hailed as "a brilliant event that's always hugely popular. It's a great testament to Jane's legacy."



Hannah Cockroft

With a disability affecting her balance and mobility, Hannah Cockroft knows all about overcoming the odds to achieve success.

The Halifax-born wheelchair athlete has always been a long-time supporter of the Appeal, with Hannah's family taking part in the inaugural Leeds 10K to raise money for her first racing wheelchair.

She raced to fame at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, winning gold medals in the 100m and 200m. She was awarded an MBE in the 2013 New Year's Honours for her services to athletics. At the Rio Olympics in 2016, Hannah took home golds in the 100m, 200m and 800m, cementing her position as the world's best.

Of Jane, Hannah says: "With her uncompromising drive, unwavering determination and supreme bravery, Jane provided true inspiration and genuine hope to a great many people."



Clare Balding

Born into a horse racing family - her father, Ian, trained champion thoroughbred Mill Reef - it is no surprise that Clare was a successful amateur jockey who was Champion Lady Rider in 1990.

She began working for radio in 1994 after leaving university and has been presenting sport on television since 1998. Clare has risen to be one of the country's most successful and popular broadcasters. She regularly presents the Olympic Games, Paralympic Games and Winter Olympics as well as numerous other sports and lifestyle programmes.

In 2012 Clare helped launch the Jane Tomlinson Walk For All National Park Challenge, an event she said gave people "the chance to explore the best of our countryside."




Danny Mills

"An inspiration" is Danny's simple description of Jane. And the former Leeds United and England footballer is an enthusiastic patron of the charity.

Danny enjoyed a successful career and was England's first choice right back at the 2002 World Cup. Since retiring because of a knee injury, he has done media work as a pundit and reached a whole new audience of fans when he was runner up in the 2012 series of BBC Television's Celebrity Masterchef. He is now a regular pundit on national radio and television.

He has helped to promote and taken part in events organised by the Jane Tomlinson Run For All team and has taken part in many events including the Leeds Half Marathon, the Leeds 10K and the Yorkshire Marathon sporting Jane Tomlinson Appeal colours. 

Leeds 10K Mike Jones , Danny Mills , Phil Dowd


Eleanor Oldroyd

Bury-born Eleanor Oldroyd has a voice known to millions as a popular sports reporter and presenter on BBC Radio 5 Live.

Eleanor got to know Jane in 2002 when she was a member of the judging panel for the BBC Sports Personality Helen Rollason Award.

Eleanor, who took part in the 2013 York 10K for the Jane Tomlinson Appeal, has said of Jane: "I was blown away by her incredible spirit and determination and that she was able to push herself to extraordinary lengths. She was a remarkable woman."


Elly Oldroyd2


Jane's Fundraising Challenges

  • I'm delighted to support the Leeds 10K. Jane, a Sparks vice-president herself, was a truly inspirational figure who became our biggest-ever individual fundraiser.

    Sir Matthew Pinsent CBE
    Four-time Olympic Gold Medallist

    Sir Matthew Pinsent CBE
  • I was lucky enough to call Jane a friend and like many was touched by her determination and drive to make a difference to many millions of people's lives, despite battling with her own cruel illness.

    Steve Cram OBE
    Olympic Silver Medalist

    Steve Cram OBE
  • Jane's unwavering determination, strength courage and selflessness in the face of adversity is an inspiration to each and every one of us. I feel privileged to have the opportunity to play a part in making sure that Jane's memory and legacy lives in the great work of the Appeal.

    Chrissie Wellington
    Four time World Ironman Champion

    Chrissie Wellington
  • Jane led the way on many occasions with inspirational feats that left us all in awe of her absolute determination and keen desire to help others.

    Nell McAndrew
    Jane Tomlinson Appeal Patron

    Nell McAndrew
  • It is a huge honour for me to be a patron of the Jane Tomlinson Appeal. Jane was such a very special person. Her bravery, courage and strength were a huge inspiration to me, and I am sure to so many others. She fought cancer every step with such passion and positivity.

    Paula Radcliffe MBE

    Paula Radcliffe MBE