Great alumni join Great Birmingham Run

Alumnus and Egyptologist Dr Chris Naunton (BA Ancient History and Archeology, 1999; MPhil Egyptology, 2001) is aiming to run for Cure Leukaemia in a Tutankhamun outfit!

Chris is running the Bupa Great Birmingham Run for Cure Leukaemia and the University on 19 October. If he reaches his £1,500 fundraising target he will wear an Egyptian headdress for the race and if he raises £2,500 he will don Egyptian leggings as well. He completed a Masters at Birmingham and has since become Director of the Egypt Exploration Society (EES) a role that has seen him present TV documentaries on ancient Egypt on the BBC and Channel 4.

Chris lost his mother Judy to leukaemia in 2010 and is keen to help raise funds and awareness for the University of Birmingham and Cure Leukaemia after seeing their collaboration for the ‘Birmingham, let’s cure leukaemia’ campaign which was launched earlier this year to help the city find a cure for all blood cancers within the next 30 years. 

He said, “My mother’s 10 months of leukaemia treatment and eventual passing was the most profound experience of my life and stays with me every day. It is a great comfort to my whole family to think that my story might help persuade people to give money to charities like Cure Leukaemia. Leukaemia is a horrible, horrible illness and I want to help people who are in a similar position to my mum, there’s not much I wouldn’t do to have her back. Given my line of work it seemed an obvious idea to have an Egyptian themed outfit as a bit of fun for the race and I hope I can reach the target even if it will mean I stand out on 19 October!

"I loved my time at the University of Birmingham and knowing the great work that Cure Leukaemia do in conjunction with the University made my choice of charity an easy one.”

James McLaughlin, Chief Executive of Cure Leukaemia, said “It’s always a great pleasure to see the variety of stories that emerge from our runners every year and Chris’ highlights the light and shade of everything we do as a charity. Whilst his mother’s story is a sad one his fundraising can directly help the patients who are battling this disease throughout the West Midlands. I hope Chris reaches his target
and we get to see his costume on the day itself!”

Chris is one of many University alumni, staff, students, and supporters who will run on 19 October; he has already raised nearly £500 and a further £1000 will see him run in the Egyptian outfit. You can donate via: https://www.justgiving.com/chris-naunton1/ .