Shortly after the purchase of a London Freemasons’ lapel pin in support of the London Air Ambulance Appeal, Bro. David Cooke of Westminster City Council Lodge No. 2882 started to think of how he could increase his £5.00 donation to something a little bigger. Bro. Cooke had already run six Marathons in support of various charities and was therefore no stranger to the hard work and dedication required to complete the gruelling course around the streets of London. On the 24th April 2016 he became a Guinness World Record holder by running the London Marathon wearing full upper body, hood and glove chainmail, with a time of 5:45:52, beating the previous world record of 5:49:07 set in 2014.
The suit of armour weighed just under 20KG (approx. 44lbs) and had restricted movement. This forced him to review and change his plans on how to tackle the challenge. “Running is just not the same, for starters the tunic comes down just above my knees restricting your normal stride. Your body is enclosed in heavy chains and my first runs just felt so strange”.
A number of Lodges with which he has connections made pledges of support and his own Lodge, Westminster City Council Lodge No. 2882, have supported him with additional collections at meetings. At a meeting held in January 2016, Bro. Cooke’s running identity was born following a speech at the Festive Board. “I was asked by our Charity Steward to say a few words about the challenge I had embarked on. Some brethren cheered at the end with the name Chainmail Dave, which has now stuck and I use to help promote my challenge”. ChainmailDave16 along with the lapel pin design that started this challenge was emblazoned on his running kit and race day costume. His aim was to raise as much money as possible for the LAA appeal and has a target of £3,000. “This would be an amazing achievement for me but just completing the challenge would be great”
If you would like to donate in appreciation for Bro. Cooke's amazing achievement you still can on his Just Giving Page which can be found here.