A TEAM of runners from Oxfordshire raised more than £22,000 for the Charlbury-based technology charity Special Effect by completing the route of the first-ever marathon in Ancient Greece.

Earlier this month the five men followed the original route taken by the messenger Pheidippides, who ran from the battlefield at Marathon to the Acropolis in the Greek capital Athens in 490BC to bring news of the Athenian army’s victory over Persian invaders.

The run took in rough tracks and tough terrain from the village of Marathon over the Pentelli hills to Athens.

“The locals thought we were mad,” said Nick Moglia, one of the runners.

“This isn't a recognised route, and Andy was bitten by a dog after just one mile. But we all completed the challenge."

Mr Moglia and fellow runners Simon Bennett, Rod Densham, Andy Nuttall and Nic Yeoman are all ambassadors or trustees of the charity, which helps people with disabilities to have a better quality of life through the use of cutting-edge technology including eye-controlled computers and adapted game controllers.

Some of the sponsorship they raised came from Halloween celebrations held at Witney’s Wychwood Brewery in October.

If you would like to make a donation, visit justgiving.com/teams/SpecialEffectRealMarathon