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Press release

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

Former football manager remembered in charity tournament and fete

Former football manager remembered in charity tournament and fete

A football tournament and fete has taken place in memory of an Abingdon man lost to a brain tumour, to help scientists searching for a cure for the disease.

Several teams took part in the third annual Alan May Memorial Football Tournament, raising over £600 for the Brain Tumour Research charity. The event marked the second anniversary of the death of former Saxton Rovers Football Club manager Alan, who first organised the competition while undergoing treatment for a brain tumour.

The football fundraiser took place in at Saxton Rovers’ ground on Saturday 4th August 2018. Alan’s two sons, Shane and Dayle May, hosted the tournament and his former side, Mabby’s Mates, finished as champions after a nail-biting penalty shootout. His wife, Sandra May, organised the fete. After the celebrations were complete, players and supporters were invited to raise money for the charity, which included a raffle and cake stall.

Sandra, a 49-year-old Abingdon resident, who was married to Alan for 30 years, said: “The football tournament and fete has been a fantastic way to bring the local community together and has helped to give me purpose through my bereavement. The money we raised from Saturday’s tournament is included in the £5,400 we’ve raised for Brain Tumour Research over the years. Alan was well-known by his neighbours and as a family we have found comfort in hosting this event, which I hope to help organise for many years to come, to continue Alan’s legacy.”

Alan, a builder, was diagnosed with a glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) – a highly aggressive type of brain tumour – after suffering from severe headaches. Despite having radiotherapy and chemotherapy, Alan passed away in August 2016, just 10 months after his diagnosis, aged 51. He left behind his wife, two sons Dayle and Shane, and three young granddaughters Ellie, six, Lola, five and Poppy, three.

Michael Thelwall, Head of Community Fundraising for Brain Tumour Research, said: “We are extremely grateful to the May family for organising another successful football tournament and fete in memory of Alan. We are also grateful to the Abingdon residents for participating in the fun and hope to inspire others to fundraise for this worthy cause.”

“For too long, brain tumours have been a neglected cancer. Alan’s story reminds us all that we cannot allow this desperate situation to continue. Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone, at any age, at any time. What’s more, they 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 fight devastating disease.”

 

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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