Fancy trying something new? A hula hoopathon is set to take place – and it’s in aid of a good cause.

Fitness instructor Debbie Jones is organising the event at Bridport Leisure Centre as part of her fundraising efforts in the lead-up to next year’s London Marathon.

Debbie will reach a milestone birthday next year and instead of putting her feet up, she has chosen to put on her running shoes and compete in the race in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society.

Although she is a fitness instructor, running hasn’t been part of Debbie’s fitness regime until now.

“I haven’t run in 30 years and I wanted a challenge to celebrate my 50th year,” said Debbie. “So I’ve got myself a place in the London Marathon next year.”

Many of Bridport Leisure Centre’s staff are dementia friends, which means people with dementia are understood, respected and supported.

Debbie took part in a group dementia-friendly information session, which helped staff to understand the disease and how it may affect customers or colleagues.

Debbie said: “This made me more aware of the problems people with dementia face on a daily basis. Dementia touches so many people’s lives and I wanted to raise awareness of the condition, and of the help and support available, so this was the inspiration behind my choice of charity.”

Debbie has started her training already and, to get the ball rolling, she has decided to put on a community hula hoopathon event on Sunday, November 4, from 9am to 12 noon.

Last year, Debbie held a successful charity hula hoopathon at the leisure centre for cancer charity The Living Tree. She says: “The event was a great success. We had a lot of fun and people were very generous with their support, so I have decided to hold a similar event. I’m hoping that with the support of the public I can make this event even bigger and better!”