Shropshire dairy farmer Matt Eardley and Shrewsbury-based Strutt & Parker land agent Jack Tavernor are preparing for a monumental marathon challenge – taking on four marathons in each of the UK’s four countries on four consecutive days.

They will be joined by friends Rich Wakelin and Jonathan Brindley in this challenge to raise funds for a local hospice. Starting in Wales on 24 May, they will be making use of overnight ferries to and from Ireland to make the challenge possible.

“It’s four marathons in four days in four countries, so we’re calling the challenge the hardest 4x4x4 by far,” says Jonathan.

Matt Eardley comments: “We’re really excited about the challenge; I’m not sure that anything like this will have ever been done before”.

All money raised will go to St Luke’s Hospice, which, being part of the Douglas Macmillan organisation, provides support and care for terminally ill people in north Shropshire and south Cheshire.

Matt and Jack have four London Marathons under their belt already and in 2007 all four completed Wainwright’s 192-mile coast to coast walk in just seven days. But they believe this will be much more arduous.

“The hardest part will be all of the travelling if we are to do it in just four days,” says Richard. “We can mentally prepare for the marathons, but to a large extent the travel arrangements, particularly the ferries, are just an unknown quantity. We will be driving ourselves and because of that and having to catch ferries in the middle of the night we will have a serious lack of sleep.”

Sponsor them online at www.justgiving.com/4marathons4countries4days