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Marathon March Stories: Mark Bright

A series of stories uncovered by Andrew McSteen on why people take part in the Marathon March and what Palace for Life means to them.

Marathon March Stories: Mark Bright

Crystal Palace F.C. legend, Crystal Palace Ambassador and Palace for Life Foundation supporter.

On why he keeps coming back to participate in the Marathon March (he has walked in every one):

“Just because what the Foundation do. As you know, the work in the community is really important for us to keep the profile high, help raise good funds to go out and help young Londoners.

“If you go along to see some of the projects they do, it’s amazing work they do – and it’s growing. If there is any way I can help the Palace for Life Foundation, I do.”

On seeing the effects and impact of the Palace for Life Foundation in person and how it can change people’s lives:

“I don’t go to all (projects) I go to a few – I want to make that clear. I get out when I can, but they are really life-changing. I don’t think that’s any exaggeration when you say that, when you walk (here) and talk to certain people who’ve been affected by it.

“We had one girl who said that the Foundation changed her life, got her out of bed, got her doing things. She was taking drugs, she was in a low place, in a bad place and being part of some of the projects that take place has helped her, no question about it.

“I’m sure that (story) can be repeated by lots of other people. Our coaches can tell loads of stories of people who they saved, so when you say changing lives (it) really means changing lives because not everybody lives how you live.”

On walking in the Marathon March with the community of Crystal Palace supporters and others:

“I try to move along the groups (walking) and try and talk to people as I can and have a laugh and they ask questions or we ask questions that may have different conversations.

“It’s great. This is my fifth time (doing it). It’s just a great day. Today started foggy but turned out really nice. We’ll just try and move along the groups, have a chat, see people’s backstory, why they’re doing things and have an interest in them, rather than they ask all me all the questions.”

On why people should participate in the Marathon March and what they can personally gain from participating in it:

“Helping, camaraderie. When you do it you get a sense of achievement. I’ve run four marathons but finishing these is just as satisfying because you’ve got to get through the distance. There’s the hurt stage, where everybody hurts a little bit, but if you’re thinking of doing it, come and do it. Come and enjoy it, come and mix, you’ll make friends, you’ll stay in touch and help raise money.”


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