Spurred on by the memory of his best friend, an Enfield runner will be taking on the London Marathon this year.

Lee Ryan will run the 26-mile race through the centre of London for his best friend James Bacon.

The pair hoped to run the race together, but Mr Bacon died at the age of 31 from bowel cancer.

The disease was discovered when Mr Bacon went into hospital with severe stomach cramps and died only three months later after catching a bacterial infection that led to pneumonia.

For Mr Ryan, this year's London Marathon will be his eighth, and he is hoping to achieve a world record for the fastest marathon in the world carrying a 20lb backpack.

A photo of Mr Bacon will be on the backpack.

Mr Ryan said: “He really was an iron man to me and I hope that the photo speaks a million words. James was too young to be taken.

“He was fit, healthy, active and a very happy, outgoing person. He said he would run London marathon with me but he never got the chance.”

Head of community and events for Bowel Cancer UK Dani Freedland said: "Without people like Lee doing amazing fundraising events like this, Bowel Cancer UK couldn’t continue to do the vital work it does to save lives and improve the quality of life for all those affected by bowel cancer.”

The number of people under 50 who are diagnosed with bowel cancer stands at around 2,100 every year.

The London marathon will take place on April 13.