‘Run for Redfern’: more than 60 joggers join Leicester fundraising challenge in memory of much-loved former DMU student
By Alfie Linville-Sibley
The second annual ‘Run for Redfern’ arrived at the steps of the De Montfort University student union at the weekend as scores of joggers honoured the memory of much-loved DMU alumnus Adam Redfern.
The air was filled with cheers and applause on Sunday as students, staff, and Adam’s friends crossed the finish line, blazing red in their ‘Run for Redfern’ tees, after the completing the 5km course across Leicester from Victoria Park to the heart of the DMU campus.
More than 60 runners took part in the run, raising up to £1,500 for the Adam Redfern Memorial Fund, which provides a student scholarship and aims to make DMU a ‘heart safe campus’. Adam died of a sudden heart attack while out jogging in March 2021. He was just 28.
After starting at 11am, all the runners were over the line by noon. Following the race, Adam’s parents, Christine and Ian Redfern, gave a short speech to the runners in the DSU in front of a banner bearing a picture of their son.
“We wanted to give everybody a chance to run and remember Adam this year, and seeing this growth in just one year is amazing,” Ian said.
The first ‘Run for Redfern was held in 2022, with eight of Adam’s friends running on a sponsorship basis. Between them, they raised £3,000 for the memorial fund.
Elgan Hughes, one of those original eight, said: “Seeing so many students sat in the Union on a cold Sunday morning like this is amazing. After last year we realised Adam deserved something bigger to remember him, so we decided to open it up to everyone this year.”
“Hopefully next year everyone that’s here today will bring a friend along, and then the same will happen the year after, that’s the ultimate goal,” Elgan said.
“It was a big job to organise this, between the council and the staff at the Union and De Montfort everybody involved was fantastic. Hopefully, we’ll see you all again next March for an even bigger Run for Redfern,” Ian Redfern said.
The memorial fund keeps Adam’s memory alive by creating opportunities for students with a flair for journalism, media or sport through a scholarship, allowing third-year students the chance to pursue their passions.
Adam, who has been described as “the best of DMU in one person”, was a Journalism (BA) graduate who went on to work as part of the Student Union and later joined DMU’s social media team.
Christine Redfern said: “The first scholarship has gone out this year to a film student, and seeing what she’s doing with the opportunity is amazing.”
The memorial foundation is also aiming to fund the installation and related training for on-campus defibrillators to make DMU ‘heart safe’ and raise awareness for SADS (sudden arrhythmic death syndrome), when someone dies following an unexplained cardiac arrest.
Runner Richard Bowden, a former colleague of Adam’s, said: “Adam was always looking for opportunities to support students. He made lots of DSU roles paid so students would be more rewarded and the DSU would be better staffed.”
Click here to make a donation to the Adam Redfern Memorial Fund.