Miles Kington Remembered: The Marathon is about love, sex and Welsh politics

19 April 1999

Related Topics

The couple who got married while they were actually running in this year's London Marathon were not the only ones to make history in the great race. There were many other curious stories to come out of the long distance ordeal, including the following...

"We got divorced during the 1999 London Marathon."

Jim and Emily Littwak met during the latter stages of the 1995 London Marathon when both were looking for any excuse to give up. He encouraged her to persevere, love flourished and they got married in 1996. However, Emily met someone else during the 1997 race and, well, it was love at first sight again.

"I could somehow sense when Emily moved in with this other fellow that our marriage was beginning to drift apart," admits Jim Littwak, "and this year we decided that enough was enough. Still, we thought it only fitting that a marriage that had started in the Marathon should finish in the Marathon, so we arranged for divorce proceedings to be started during the race today. And all may turn out for the best, as during the race I met a nice girl whom I am seeing again tomorrow."

"I took up Welsh politics during the London Marathon."

David Williams, who left his native Cardiff 12 years ago, was nearing the 10-mile mark when he was approached by two Welsh Labour Party workers who were out canvassing for votes among Welsh expatriates as they ran.

"It was quite odd, really. One moment I was getting my second wind, the next moment someone was asking me if I was aware that I had a vote in the Welsh Assembly elections and whether I would be using it. Then another voice asked me how important the Welsh identity was to me. Then I said that I had left Wales to get away from all this sort of thing, but that if I did vote it would probably be Plaid Cymru. Then we got into quite an argument after that, and I must have lost track of time, because the next thing I knew we were crossing the Severn Bridge into Wales!"

"I fathered a love child during the London Marathon."

Sidney and Georgia Greenslade claim to have made love during this year's London Marathon, and that the ensuing child may be a Millennium Marathon baby, but they refuse to go into details, not so much because they are coy about it as because they have signed up their story to a rival newspaper.

"I cooked and served a complete three-course dinner while running the London Marathon."

TV chef Aubrey Manningtree has been looking for a gimmick for a new TV cooking series ever since his last series Chef Up A Gum Tree (which showed what handy recipes you could cook while lost in a forest) didn't get a second series. He thinks he has found a worthy replacement in Cook On The Run which shows what handy meals you can dish up without ever standing still. During yesterday's race, he not only successfully served up soup, salmon and souffle, but managed to set fire to several rival runners whom he promptly doused with mineral water.

"I've done a lot of funny things in my life," says Manningtree, "but that's the first time I've gone up to someone on fire and said, 'Sparkling or still, sir?'."

"I made over £200,000 during the race!"

Young City financier Edwin Phelps likes to keep in touch with the markets round the world every day of the week, including Sunday. "I estimated I would take about three hours for the race, which is three hours away from the markets if you don't have a phone. So I took one with me and did a lot of business during the race," he said.

"I got a lot of cross looks from other runners but I think they'd have thought differently if they knew I made about a quarter of a million during the race. Doesn't work for everyone. There was a guy I was running close to who was also on the phone and he must have lost about a quarter of a million during the race. That may have been why he threw himself off the bridge when we crossed the Thames. Damned stupid thing to do. Didn't he know his mobile wouldn't work underwater?"

"I changed sex during the London Marathon."

"It's always been my ambition to start the Marathon as a man and end it as a woman," says Julian, now Julia, Ordish (continued some other time).

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Primary Teacher Cornwall

£21500 - £40000 per annum: Randstad Education Plymouth: ***KS1 & KS2 Teachers ...

Year 5 Teacher

£80 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Year 5 Teacher KS2 teaching job...

Software Developer

£35000 - £45000 Per Annum Pensions Scheme After 6 Months: Clearwater People So...

Systems Analyst / Business Analyst - Central London

£35000 - £37000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Systems Analyst / Busines...

Day In a Page

Read Next

i Editor's Letter: A huge step forward in medical science, but we're not all the way there yet

Oliver Duff Oliver Duff
David Cameron has painted a scary picture of what life would be like under a Labour government  

You want constitutional change? Fixed-term parliaments have already done the job

Steve Richards
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Salisbury ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities

The city is home to one of the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta, along with the world’s oldest mechanical clock
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album