]“HORRENDOUS” footage of cruelty to a defenceless donkey has motivated a Sidmouth woman to tackle a brutal 21-mile run in aid of a charity that rescues the animals.

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Nicola Russell will tackle the Grizzly Run in March to raise funds for The Donkey Sanctuary after a video of a creature being killed reduced her to tears.

Nicola, who has been working as a public relations assistant in the charity’s press office for two years, says she has been inspired by the work it does around the world.

The keen runner - who completed the Edinburgh marathon last May - will be taking on the Grizzly for the first time and has been training hard.

Nicola said: “Working in the press office I often see cruelly mistreated donkeys arriving into our care.

“Two months into my job, a supporter reported a video on You Tube of a defenceless donkey being killed in an inhumane and savage way. It brought me to tears and to this day the horrendous footage will never leave my mind, I can’t understand why people would be cruel to donkeys, they are such gentle and placid animals.

“The brutal 21 mile run across pebbles, through mud, up and down hills isn’t something I’ve prepared for but seeing the ordeal some donkeys go through has given me the will and passion to run the course and raise money to prevent cruelty to these vulnerable donkeys. I want to put a stop to donkey cruelty.”

To help Nicola raise money for The Donkey Sanctuary visit www.justgiving.com/Nicola-Russell2, or text ‘NICR54’ and the amount you would like to donate to 70070.

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