A school teacher will be running the London Marathon in support of a hospital that gave his godfather “another shot at life”.

When Mario Scannella, of Winchmore Hill, was just 34-years-old, he underwent a life-saving heart operation.

At 16, Mr Scannella had been diagnosed with a disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, which led to a pacemaker being fitted six years later.

It reached the stage where, at 34, new father Mr Scannella was in need of a transplant or he would die.

After three donor calls, he received the incredibly welcome news that he would be able to undergo a transplant, which happened at The Royal Papworth Hospital in Cambridge.

Mr Scannella, a mechanic, has since gone on to marry his wife Amanda and has three children.

Now his godson, Mario Noto has ambitions to help the hospital that kept his godfather alive. He will be doing this by raising money for Royal Papworth when he takes on the London Marathon this Sunday.

Enfield Independent: Mario Noto training for the marathon Mario Noto training for the marathon (Image: Mario Noto)

Mr Noto, who lives in Oakwood, said: “I cannot express the admiration, gratitude and debt we owe to Royal Papworth Hospital. The money I raise will hopefully in a small way help other families who find themselves in such a dark place.

“Our love for the donor who gave Mario a new heart will always be precious to us as a family, as will the incredible Royal Papworth Hospital transplant team that undertook such an exceptional operation that saved Mario’s life.”

Mr Noto, who is also an assistant manager at Enfield Town Football Club, will also be running to support Haven House Children's Hospice; inspired by his wife Paola, who has worked in the hospice sector for 12 years.

So far, the 37-year-old has raised more than £2,300 after setting a target of £4,000.

Mr Noto said: “Marathon training you may think has been easier for me with years of fitness and exercise behind me, however running in extreme heat this summer and along the mountain roads of Italy has been quite the test.

“Thank you for supporting me on my marathon journey and for making a difference to these two amazing charities that change people's lives.”

To support the fundraiser visit https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/mariorunslondon22#start