A CHESTER man will undertake a triple running challenge to raise money for a heart charity in memory of his dad, whose sudden death was like 'a light switch had gone off.'

Phil Mole, 45, is completing the Chester Triple for the British Heart Foundation (BHF) – a charity he said was always important to dad, Neil.

The Chester Triple includes completing a 10km run, half marathon and metric/full marathon all within one year. Each event starts and finishes in Chester city centre, the series was originally created to encourage new runners through the different distances.

So far Phil has already completed the 10km which took place in March 2023 and is looking forward to the half marathon on 21 May – before the big one in October 2023.

Phil, who lives in Chester with wife Emma and children Henry, 12, and Oscar, 4, said it had been a 'no brainer' to pick BHF to fundraise for after Neil died.

"When he died last year, he was only 65 so still a relatively young bloke," said Phil.

"He was a big, strapping guy who loved sports, a real grafter who used to work for the local council.

Chester and District Standard: Phil with wife, Emma and sons, Henry and Oscar.Phil with wife, Emma and sons, Henry and Oscar. (Image: BHF)

"But he also loved the good times, he loved his family around him and that is how we remember him.

"His death was completely unexpected and very sudden – it was like a light switch had gone off.

"It happened at home with my mum – she was there with him but although the paramedics were called and worked tirelessly with him for an hour or so, it was declared that we had lost him."

Neil lived in Wooler, Northumberland with Phil’s mum Alison - which is also where Phil grew up before moving to Chester for university.

Phil said an autopsy revealed his dad’s death was due to a sudden cardiac arrest caused by a heart attack.

"After dad died, I told mum I wanted to do the Chester Triple and asked which charity I should fundraise for – without a second thought, it had to be BHF," Phil said.

"It was a charity that was always close to my dad’s heart – he used to watch the London Marathon and other big events on television and always commented on how much he admired them for the research and the support they give.

"My mum said he would be absolutely thrilled that I am doing this for them."

Phil, who works as a Business Continuity Consultant for Bank of America in Chester, said he was getting great support from his colleagues as well as his family, including receiving donations from people in the UK and the US.

"Everyone has been really supportive – I am absolutely delighted. Slowly but surely my story is being shared and I am getting donations from around the globe.

"I’m just bowled over by everyone’s generosity."

Leah Goodhind, BHF’s fundraising manager for Cheshire, said she was sure Phil’s dad would have been incredibly proud of what his son was doing.

"It’s lovely that Phil has chosen a charity to fund raise for that was close to his dad’s heart even before he sadly passed away following a heart attack himself," Leah said.

"It seems fitting that the money raised by Phil will go towards funding life-saving research which could in the future help people like his dad.

"Good luck Phil – everyone at BHF will be cheering you on all the way."

For further information and to support Phil, visit his Just Giving page.