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

School getting hatty for Holly

A school is preparing for a hattastic day of fundraising inspired by a member of the school community who lost her beloved daughter to the disease.

Elaine Williams has worked as personal assistant to the Head at Ashford Prep School in Kent for 28 years. She first introduced the school to Wear A Hat Day shortly after her daughter Holly Loudon was diagnosed with a brain tumour in February 2015. 

Holly underwent radiotherapy and chemotherapy but died 10 months later in December 2015, aged 29. She left her seven-year-old son Harrison (pictured below with Holly) whom she “adored”.

The school has continued to support Wear A Hat Day ever since Holly’s diagnosis and this year’s event – which will be held the school’s second to last day of term on 23rd March – will see around 390 pupils and 70 members of staff donning their hats to help find a cure.

Elaine said: “Holly wanted me to make everybody aware of how awful brain tumours are. I promised I’d do all I could to make that happen and by supporting Brain Tumour Research I’ve been able to do that.

“At school, everyone knows Holly’s story because they’ve all been on that journey with me and those who knew her are even more keen to support it.”

She added: “I wear a big pink top hat every year for Wear A Hat Day and we have collection buckets out the front of school. As the children arrive, they put money in the buckets. We also sell the charity’s wristbands and pin badges from the school office for three or four weeks before the event.”

Wear A Hat Day officially takes place on Friday 31st March, but you can hold your event on any day in March that suits you. There’s no limit to the ways you can get involved – wear a hat and do a sponsored walk, host a part, hold a quiz or organise a bake sale, or get your thinking cap on and come up with something totally unique!

Register now for your free fundraising pack via

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