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Press release

Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years

Father and daughter’s Shetland Island trek funds research into brain tumours

Father and daughter’s Shetland Island trek funds research into brain tumours

A father and daughter who were bereaved by a brain tumour have walked over 80 miles to help scientists who are searching for a cure for the disease.

Mum-of-four Jan Cummings, 35, walked the length of the Shetland Isles after losing her mum, Beth Cummings, to a brain tumour. She was joined by her dad, Ian Cummings, 66, who was married to Beth for 42 years, and together they raised £8,000 for the Brain Tumour Research charity.

Beth, who ran a B&B in Scalloway, was diagnosed with four brain tumours after having a seizure. Despite enduring surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy, Beth died in April 2018, aged 60, two years after her diagnosis.

Jan, from Gulberwick, in Shetland, said: “When my mam was diagnosed with brain cancer, my family’s world was turned upside down. She faced her illness and treatment with strength and bravery, but sadly lost her battle just a few months ago. This is the reason why Dad and I decided to raise money for Brain Tumour Research.

“The walk was a fitting tribute to my mam, who did a lot of fundraising and charity events herself. I’m sure she would be proud of me and my dad and I hope to inspire others to fundraise for this vital cause.”

Setting off from Skaw, on the island of Unst, Jan and Ian walked a total of 83.7 miles over five days and braved camping in changeable weather conditions, before finishing at Sumburgh on the Shetland mainland on Thursday 9th August.

Brain Tumour Research funds dedicated UK Centres of Excellence where scientists are focused on improving outcomes for patients and, ultimately, finding a cure. Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age. What’s more, brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer, yet just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease.

Joe Woollcott, a Community Fundraising Manager for Brain Tumour Research, said: “We are extremely grateful for Jan and Ian’s support and congratulate them on completing their walk. Beth’s story reminds us all that less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers. We cannot allow this situation to continue.”

To donate to Brain Tumour Research, via Jan’s JustGiving page, please go to https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jan-cummings

 

For further information, please contact:
Annie Slinn at the Brain Tumour Research charity on 01908 867239 or 07591 206545 or annie.slinn@braintumourresearch.org.

 

Notes to Editors

Brain Tumour Research is the only national charity in the UK dedicated to raising funds for continuous and sustainable scientific research into brain tumours, and we are a leading voice calling for greater support and action for research into what scientists are calling the last battleground against cancer.

We are building a network of experts in sustainable research at dedicated Centres of Excellence whilst influencing the Government and larger cancer charities to invest more nationally.

We welcome recent funding announcements for research into brain tumours from the UK Government and Cancer Research UK – £65 million pledged over the next five years. However, this potential funding of £13 million a year comes with a catch – money will only be granted to quality research proposals and, due to the historic lack of investment, there may not be enough of these applications that qualify for grants from this pot.

We want research funding parity with breast cancer and leukaemia. We are calling for a £30-35 million investment every year for research into brain tumours in order to fund the basic research groundwork needed to accelerate the translation from laboratory discoveries into clinical trials and fast-track new therapies for this devastating disease.

The Brain Tumour Research charity is a powerful campaigning organisation and represents the voice of the brain tumour community across the UK. We helped establish and provide the ongoing Secretariat for the All Party Parliamentary Group for Brain Tumours (APPGBT). We are supporting the crucial APPGBT 2018 Inquiry into the economic and social impacts of brain tumours and will publish their report in the autumn. We are also a key influencer in the development strategy for the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission. 

Key statistics on brain tumours:

  • Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age
  • Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer
  • Just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to brain tumours
  • In the UK, 16,000 people each year are diagnosed with a brain tumour
  • Brain tumours kill more children than leukaemia
  • Brain tumours kill more men under 45 than prostate cancer
  • Brain tumours kill more women under 35 than breast cancer
  • Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers

Please quote Brain Tumour Research as the source when using this information. Additional facts and statistics are available from our website. We can also provide case studies and research expertise for the media.

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