A PERSONAL trainer is set to brave searing heat as he attempts to run back-to-back marathons across the desert to raise money for a special needs school in Benfleet.

Liam Willis, from Leigh, will attempt the challenge after seeing the positive impact the Glenwood School, in Benfleet, has had on in his 12-year-old autistic niece, Lylie-Lou Green.

The personal trainer will run more than 50 miles across two days through the Jordanian desert in April.

He is hoping to raise £2,000 to help support the school.

Liam said: “My niece has inspired me, she is such a wonderful soul, and she has done so well.

“She has struggled with her autism diagnosis and has seen improvements from being at Glenwood.

“She is a loving and bright young girl with so much potential and I believe that has been brought out by the school.

“She is inspiring, and I wanted to get out there and give back to the school.

“Over Christmas, I thought ‘I need a new challenge’. I found this challenge online and thought ‘why not’.”

Liam has previously run the London Marathon as well as competing a series of other charity running challenges.

He added: “I am a lifelong runner, I started when I was 13 and I found it was really good for my mind.

“I love running for what it gives me.”

He is looking forward to the challenge, but knows it will be the hardest he has taken on.

Liam said: “The heat is the worst, I am training wrapped up in thermals to simulate the heat.

“I am confident, I am trying to not obsess over time as in the heat I do not want to push myself too hard.”

The Glenwood School is a community special school providing education for children and young people with severe or profound learning difficulties aged three to 19.

To donate and follow Liam’s journey justgiving.com/page/liam-willis-1705328562481.