Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years
Bereaved son appeals for guitarists to join Guinness World Record attempt
A bereaved carpenter from Aylesbury is attempting to break the world record for the largest electric guitar ensemble and fundraise for the pioneering charity Brain Tumour Research.
Dave Pile, aged 55 from Aylesbury, lost his mother, June, to a brain tumour in March 2013 and is now organising a Guinness World Record attempt to raise funds for research into the disease. The Great Guitar Challenge will be taking place on Sunday 22nd July at the annual Ealing Blues Festival and, to break the record, Dave requires 450 guitarists to join him on the day and play ‘Heroes’ by David Bowie. The current world record was achieved by Sky Group (India) in January 2013 when 368 participants assembled at the Agri Expo in Dimapur, India.
Laurence Knight, lead singer of the world-famous tribute band, The Bowie Experience, will sing on the day as hundreds of guitarists play the iconic David Bowie song. Blackstar Amplification has also signed up to sponsor the day, supporting the challenge with a new Blackstar Fly 3 micro amp for all participants.
Dave said: “My idea to break a world record came about two years after losing my mum to a brain tumour. I’ve been raising money for Brain Tumour Research over the last year or so but this latest venture is proving to be the toughest!
“I’m calling on all guitarists to join us and help smash the world record and raise much-needed funds for Brain Tumour Research. It saddens me that so little is known about this disease and that less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers.”
June, from Nuneaton, died aged 72 following a short and gruelling battle with a glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) – a highly aggressive type of tumour. Despite surgery to remove part of the tumour and subsequent chemotherapy and radiotherapy, June died less than six months later.
Michael Thelwall, Head of Community Fundraising for Brain Tumour Research, said: “Dave’s world record attempt in aid of Brain Tumour Research is going to be spectacular and I hope it will raise awareness of how underfunded research into the disease is.
“Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer – and less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers – yet just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease.
“We are extremely grateful to Dave for fundraising and we wish him, and everyone else in involved, the best of luck for the world record attempt.”
Guitarists can register for the event via Eventbrite; the ticket price includes a donation to Brain Tumour Research and entitles participants to a new Blackstar Fly 3 micro amp, a t-shirt to mark the event and a free day’s entry to the Ealing Blues Festival.
For more information, visit www.greatguitarchallenge.com
For further information, please contact:
Farel Williams at Brain Tumour Research on 01908 867221 or 07592 502708 or Farel.Williams@braintumourresearch.org
Notes to Editors
Brain Tumour Research is the only national charity in the UK focused on funding sustainable research to find a cure for brain tumours. We have established a game-changing network of world-class Research Centres of Excellence in the UK. Embracing passionate member charities nationwide, over £6 million was raised towards research and support during 2017.
We are campaigning to see the national spend on research into brain tumours increased to £30 - £35 million a year, in line with breast cancer and leukaemia. The unprecedented success of our 2015 petition led to the 2016 Westminster Hall debate and Brain Tumour Research taking a leading role in the Government’s Task and Finish Working Group convened to tackle the historic underfunding for research with the report being published in 2018.
Key statistics on brain tumours:
- Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer
- They kill more children than leukaemia
- They kill more men under 45 than prostate cancer
- They kill more women under 35 than breast cancer
- Just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease
- In the UK 16,000 people each year are diagnosed with a brain tumour
- Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers
- Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age
- Incidences of, and deaths from, brain tumours are increasing.
Please quote Brain Tumour Research as the source when using this information. Additional facts and statistics are available from our website including our latest Report on National Research Funding. We can also provide case-studies and research expertise for media.