At the beginning of April 2020, when lockdown shook the UK and the entire world by the force of the Covid 19 Pandemic, we started seeing and experiencing first hand the effects of lockdown on people. Our kids felt like lions in a zoo!
As a sport driven family, with no freedom to go for a run or a family walk, and our running event and our running holiday business impacted heavily by the covid restrictions we sat on our kitchen table finding ways not only to make our lives and our 3 children’s lives more bearable but also the lives of people within our network what “we thought” would be a few hundred people at the most.
In May 2020 we launched our first Virtual Lands End to John O Groats Event to help motivate people who were struggling during lockdown. We wanted something a little more than your everyday virtual event so we decided on a virtual event you could track yourself on a map and you received postcards along the route which would give you the incentive and motivation to carry on. This attracted a couple hundred people and we were thrilled! Little did we know it would soon escalate quickly and on our 3rd cohort of our most popular event Lands End to John O’Groats in July 2020 we woke up to 2,000 entries over a weekend! We’d taken our children away camping and come home to online chaos… Our feelings were a mixture of excitement and fear and come launch day our system crashed!
For the following 5 days we worked around the clock with a team of developers to quickly rebuild our system so it was able to handle the new volume and more. We call these the “Peanuts and redbull days” because Tori worked around the clock for 5 days living off peanuts and redbull!
Fast forward a few months and the feedback we’ve received and the number of new entries we get on a daily basis speak for itself, not only people are being active and losing weight, they have found purpose in times where nothing is certain, and that’s what keeps us going and makes our hearts glow.
We are now a huge community of people inspiring one another to be healthy and stay positive.
Today we have grown and developed our little idea into a business that not only helps people stay active and motivated it also helps to fight hunger by donating meals to those in need through foodbanks, charity partners, homeless shelters and more, plant trees for a more sustainable future, build sustainable drinking water and help to enhance the life of unwanted clothes through our partners at ReRun and Trees not Tees.
Behind us we now have a fantastic team to help with the day to day operations and customer support as well as software development and Maintenance as we now have over 50,000 participants from all over the world taking on our challenges.
Due to our success stories and those of our participants we have also expanded to corporate, charity and school challenges to help organisations, schools and charities keep connected virtually while fundraising, working or learning from home.
Giving back is one of our most important values, we are grateful for what we have and believe that being kind can make a huge difference in this world.
The End to End Family!