A NEWPORT man will run the city marathon route on April 19 in memory of his late nephew – despite the official event being postponed because of the coronavirus epidemic.

Lewis Routley, 34, had planned to run in the ABP Newport Wales Marathon to raise money for a memorial bench for his nephew.

Jordan Routley, 21, was a keen sportsman who died on April 21 last year after being hit by a vehicle on Chepstow Road, Newport.

But with the outbreak of coronavirus delaying that event – probably until late October – Mr Routley has decided to push on with his personal challenge and mark the first anniversary of his nephew's death.

"When he was a young boy, Jordan had a passion for cross-country and running, and I bought him his first trainers," Mr Routley said.

"To me, personally, there'd be no better way to honour him than to run this marathon for him."

South Wales Argus: Lewis Routley with his nephew Jordan.Lewis Routley with his nephew Jordan.

Mr Routley wants to raise around £2,000 – enough to buy two memorial benches and a plaque for his late nephew.

He hopes one of the benches can be placed in Beechwood Park, near the scene of the crash which claimed his nephew's life; and the other at Pill Harriers sports club, where Jordan used to play football for Pill YMCA.

"He was there every weekend, at the club – that was his life," he said.


Mr Routley said preparing for the marathon had helped him cope with the loss of his nephew.

"Just before the day of his funeral, I saw an advert online for the Newport marathon," he said.

"I decided it would be a great way to honour him, but I also believe a great way to deal with grief and depression is fitness."

In training for the 26.2-mile run, Mr Routley has lost three stone. He will be accompanied on April 19 by Leighton Davies, another family member.

And in an unofficial capacity, Mr Routley's father – Newport's mayor, Cllr William Routley – will fire the starting pistol for the two runners.

"It's poignant we do this because we are facing together a race for life," Cllr Routley said.

Mr Routley said the marathon run would also be a show of support to his sister, Jordan's mum Nicola, whom he called "the strongest woman in the world".

Jordan's death had taken a huge toll on his loved ones, he said, but "the people of Newport were fantastic to our family last year".

"It's going to be a very poignant day," he said, adding: "The pain of those 26 miles will not be anything close to the pain we've suffered as a family by not having him with us."

You can support Mr Routley's marathon challenge online at www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/miles4mags