The sight of an inflatable Canary at the finish line was the crowning moment for Robert Todd, who smashed his four-hour target in the London Marathon on Sunday.

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Robert, managing partner at Feilden and Mawson Architects and who lives in Ashby St Mary near Loddon, completed the famous 26-mile course in three hours 48 minutes.

“My wife Maria and my two children Sophie and Sam were sitting in the grandstand on the final straight and cheered me across the finish line,” said Todd.

“My nine-year-old son Sam was wearing his yellow Norwich City football top and was waving an inflatable canary, so I could easily spot him.”

Training for Robert began after Christmas in an intensive 16-week plan raising £3,000 for the MS Society.

Commenting on the challenging marathon, Robert added: “At the start there is a mix of nerves and excitement. The most difficult part for me was the section from Docklands to the Tower of London, in miles 21 to 23. My legs were aching and I knew I still had several miles to go.

“There are several goose-bump moments, in particular when I was running over Tower Bridge. The crowds there were superb.

“Another moment is turning that final corner outside Buckingham Palace into The Mall. The hairs just stand up on the back of your neck.

“I would like to thank the companies, friends and family who have sponsored me.”

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