A VERWOOD man is preparing to pound the streets of London in support of a little-known charity that helps children born without eyes.

Chris Archibold, 44, will run the London Marathon for a third time this April in the hope of raising awareness and much needed funds for MACS – the Micro and Anophthalmic Children’s Society.

The charity, which is 20 years old this year, supports children who are born either with no eyes or underdeveloped eyes.

About 80 to 90 children are born in the UK with this condition every year.

There is no treatment to restore their vision but MACS helps them lead a life that is as normal as possible.

MACS operate from an adapted caravan in Christchurch that its members can use and it has also worked with Bovington Tank Museum and Dorset Boat Trips to arrange exciting activities for children.

Father-of-two Chris, a dispensing doctor specialist with Leo Pharmaceuticals, is hoping to raise more than £2,000 for the charity and has bolstered his fundraising with collections in local Sainsbury’s supermarkets.

He said: “The charity is run by volunteer parents and is unique – spending all money raised on the children.

“At the end of last year’s marathon, a lot of the MACS children and families met MACS runners in Horse Guards Parade and gave each runner a kiss and a hug.

“It makes such a huge difference meeting the people that you are running for and knowing how it makes such a huge impact on their lives.”

To sponsor Chris, go to his fundraising page at www.justgiving.com/chrisarchibold