Dire Straits star Mark Knopfler has re-released the North East anthem Local Hero to commemorate the Bupa Great North Run reaching a world-first one millionth finish and to benefit the Future Fund.
All royalties from this digital only release will be donated to Future Fund, which aims to raise £5.5 million to establish a specialist children’s cancer research facility at Newcastle University.
Mark Knopfler and his band will be performing the track live on September 4th at the Great North Run Million Opening Ceremony.
Alongside Mark Knopfler, the event will also feature performances from Sting, multi-platinum selling festival favourites Chase & Status, an appearance from Ant and Dec, narration from Tim Healy and Jill Halfpenny and for the first time in its existence, the Sage Gateshead will be transformed into a giant screen for large scale projections of film and animation.
The track is now available for download in the UK and Ireland from iTunes, Amazon, Google, Spotify, Deezer, 7digital and Rdio.
Mark said: “I’m proud to have been a supporter of this great event from the beginning and am looking forward to being there to play ‘Local Hero’ once more on September 4th when the Bupa Great North Run gets ready to notch up its millionth finish.”
Great North Run Founder Brendan Foster added: “We’re absolutely delighted that the Great North Run theme tune is being rereleased to help raise funds for this fantastic cause. Mark has always been a great supporter of the event and it’s brilliant that over 30 years after its first release, this track is going to reach a new audience and help the Future Fund at the same time.”
The Future Fund is a collaborative project between Newcastle University, the North of England Children’s Cancer Research charity and Newcastle Hospitals’ Great North Children’s Hospital (GNCH) – home to one of the UK’s leading centres for paediatric oncology.
The planned research facility will provide state-of-the-art resources to enable world-leading academics and clinicians to advance and accelerate the children’s cancer research and treatment that has already earned them international recognition.
Professor Josef Vormoor, Director of the Northern Institute for Cancer Research at Newcastle University and Honorary Consultant Paediatric Oncologist at the GNCH, said: “We are working tirelessly to understand childhood cancer and to develop therapies with fewer side effects. We are incredibly grateful for this boost to our fundraising and for the way in which it helps raise the profile of our work.”
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