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National brain tumour research funding needs to increase to £35 million a year

Amazing grandad’s sensational 100km swim

An incredible 71-year-old has embarked on an epic swimming challenge to raise money to help find a cure for brain tumours.

Alan Holmes is challenging himself to complete 100km of open water swimming over a year. He is fundraising in support of his 18-year-old grandson, Matthew Pullan, who is currently undergoing chemotherapy for a second brain tumour.

Last year, Matthew’s twin brother Alex raised an incredible £15,000 for the charity by completing a 5km-a-day running challenge which coincided with his brother’s radiotherapy treatment.

Alan said: “Alex’s amazing efforts motivated me to do something myself. I’ve initially set a fundraising target of £1,000 but I’m hoping I can smash that and increase my target as the weeks progress. Funding research is so important, especially at a time when many charities are shouldering the financial burden of the pandemic. I want to do my bit to help.”

Having been interviewed on ITV Tees and alongside Matthew on BBC Radio Newcastle, Alan has already raised more than £4,000. His efforts were also shared on the BBC website, as well as in his local newspapers.

Matthew said: “I'm very impressed by my grandpa, giving up his time to try and find a cure for something that I’ve been told will eventually kill me. I'm amazed by the challenge; he's a man in his seventies and he's swimming in cold, dangerous waters. I certainly couldn't do it. I love him so much. What a great person to be able to look up to!”

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