Pilgrims Nurse takes on monster marathon

Pilgrims nurse Amy Stevens with her partner Heather will be taking on the Loch Ness Marathon next month, and fundraising for Pilgrims’ hospice care.

Along with hundreds of others, they will be taking on Scottish weather along with the gruelling Nessie challenge on Sunday 3 October 2021.

Amy told us: “My partner Heather and I both wanted to run our first official marathon together, and so we researched marathons in the UK. The Loch Ness Marathon appealed to us as it was in a beautiful location, we both had always wanted to visit Scotland and we were excited at the chance to see Nessie! We went to Scotland last year for the Loch Ness Marathon, but it was cancelled due to COVID, so we’re going back this year!”

Amy has been a qualified nurse for two years now, so still quite new to the role!  She told us: “I began my nursing career as a community nurse before becoming a hospice nurse. About 10 years ago, my nan became ill with cancer and spent her last couple of weeks in Pilgrims Hospice Thanet. After seeing the care the nurses gave her, it made me want to become a nurse and I think I knew then I’d want to specialise in palliative care nursing.

“I’ve been nursing at Pilgrims Hospice Thanet for five months. As a student nurse I had a placement there which I enjoyed, and found a passion for palliative care, so I knew I wanted to go back to working there!”

“I am extremely proud of being a Pilgrims nurse, I am passionate about palliative nursing and to work alongside like minded people is such a privilege.


Amy (32) from Ashford, is a regular runner and said: “I did a lot of running when at school and then got back into running four years ago. I have improved on speed and distance over the years and I’m now focusing on ultra-running.

Amy and Heather

“During lockdown when all races were stopped, I trained myself and completed marathon distances in the countryside between Canterbury and Wye and along the coast from Whitstable to Pegwell. The Loch Ness Marathon will be my first official marathon.

“Heather is my partner, my best friend and my running buddy! We are really excited about taking on this challenge.  The training is going well, we are both motivated people, so when we are not working, we enjoy going running together or for a solo run.

“On our runs, our favourite energy snacks are Skittles and for our longer runs, I like a peanut butter and banana wrap and Heather likes a cashew nut butter wrap. We are great at motivating each other.”

When asked if she had a finishing time in mind? Amy said: “Nope, we just want to enjoy the distance and the atmosphere.”

If you would like to support Amy and Heather’s fundraising for Pilgrims Hospices, please visit their JustGiving page.

After the marathon the girls have two weeks in Scotland to relax, explore the highlands, eat and drink at new places and soak in the culture.

Finally Amy said: “I am extremely proud of being a Pilgrims nurse, I am passionate about palliative nursing and to work alongside like minded people is such a privilege. It is a wonderful multi-disciplinary team at Thanet; everyone is fantastic at what they do, and it makes such a difference to patient care when we all work together, to give the best patient centred care possible.

“Most of my career as a nurse has been spent working through COVID. It has been tough and stressful at times, but I think this has helped me to become the best nurse I possibly can and help those who need my care. I love being a nurse and couldn’t imagine doing any other career now.”

For more information about a career in nursing at Pilgrims Hospices, please contact Pilgrims’ HR team on 01227 812 612 or email recruitment@pilgrimshospices.org.

Thank you for sharing your story Amy and good luck to you both next month in the Loch Ness Marathon.

Each year Pilgrims Hospices give care and comfort to over 2,500 people in east Kent who are coming to terms with an illness that sadly cannot be cured. The charity support patients to live life as well as possible until the very end, free from pain and distress.