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Friday, 19 April, 2002, 09:17 GMT 10:17 UK
Diving suit marathon man nears finish
Lloyd Scott passes Tower Bridge
Lloyd said the idea of running in flippers was 'too easy'
A former leukaemia sufferer 'running' the London Marathon in a 130lb antique diving suit is hoping to complete the course on Friday.

Beginning his sixth day on the road, Lloyd Scott said he was determined to secure 32,875th place in the race.

Despite being extremely tired and sore from the weight of his outfit, he insisted giving up was not an option with too many people counting on him to succeed.

His efforts have already raised 80,000 for child cancer victims and the final figure could pass 100,000.

'Worst yet'

The former fireman and professional football player - he was a goalkeeper for Leyton Orient, Watford and Blackpool - is looking forward to a celebration with family and friends when he finishes.

The real Lloyd Scott
Lloyd Scott spends the nights in a mobile home
He said: "I'm really looking forward to... when I get down The Mall and cross the finishing line, not just for myself but also for all the people that have helped me along the course."

On Thursday Mr Scott faced the most difficult part of the course - crossing the cobbles outside the Tower of London.

He said: "The first couple of hours this morning were the worst I have experienced. It was the first time that I thought I wouldn't make the finish in time.

"However, I never actually thought about stopping, there are too many people relying on me and I've already collected so much money."

'Stupid' idea

Since he started the 26.2 mile race the 40-year-old, from Rainham in Essex, has covered a little more than four-and-a-half miles each day.

I think it gives people some hope that they can go out and do things like this

Carole Scott
Mr Scott has modified the 2,500 1940s suit by removing the glass mask - so he can breathe - and making slits to allow him to go to the toilet.

He wears it for 12 hours at a time, with nights spent sleeping in a mobile home driven by supporters to look forward to.

Mr Scott's wife Carole, who has been following his progress with twin sons Luke and Elliot, eight, and daughter Aimee, 13, said the idea was "stupid".

But she added: "Knowing him like I do, I wasn't surprised when he decided to carry on and go through with it."

"I am really, really proud of him. I think it gives people some hope that they can go out and do things like this."

Mount Everest marathon

Mr Scott was diagnosed with leukaemia in 1987 and ran his first marathon two years later - to get fit for a bone marrow transplant.

He completed the course in three hours and 11 minutes.

Since his recovery Mr Scott has helped raise around 1m for CLIC - Cancer and Leukaemia in Childhood.

He has previously completed the Mount Everest marathon, ran across Death Valley, walked across the Sahara, climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania and Mount Aconcagua in Argentina.

The BBC's George Eykyn
"What they are calling the slowest ever marathon will finally end"
See also:

16 Apr 02 | UK
Suffering in the Sahara
04 Apr 02 | UK
Desert run in a rhino suit
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