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Press release

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

Hats on for Brain Tumour Research!

Feb 6, 2018

Charity campaign Wear A Hat Day returns on Thursday 29th March 2018, this year led by Caprice, a survivor of the disease.

Businesswoman, model, actress and mum, Caprice, revealed she had been diagnosed with a brain tumour in April 2017. She recalls: "I had headaches that were not going away and my vision was beginning to act up."

Caprice explains what went through her mind as doctors broke the news: “It was the most terrifying moment of my life. I have always been pretty healthy so I couldn't believe what they were telling me. I just thought about my two little boys, Jax and Jett [now four years old]." Following successful surgery to remove the low-grade tumour, Caprice continues to be monitored by her medical team.

Alongside Debbie McGee and Sheila Hancock, Caprice is joining supporters, clinicians, researchers and MPs in a programme of charity events in the run-up to Wear A Hat Day 2018, supporting pioneering national charity Brain Tumour Research. The three stars will be featuring in a poster advertising campaign in stations across the London Underground and national rail from 26th February.

Television, radio and stage performer, Debbie McGee, lost her husband Paul Daniels to a brain tumour in 2016. Debbie teamed up with the charity to produce a special ‘Rabbit in a Hat’ badge (available via the charity) as a tribute to the great magician.

Long-time supporter, actor and author Sheila Hancock CBE, whose grandson survived a childhood brain tumour, will also be appearing in the charity ad campaign for the second year running.

Specsavers will be supporting Wear A Hat Day 2018 as an official sponsor for the first time.

The charity has again partnered with Hobbycraft, the UK’s largest craft retailer, running in-store events and donating a percentage from sales of their exclusive ‘Pink Glitter Side Hat’ to the charity.

Milliner Noel Stewart has joined fashion luminaries such as Philip Treacy OBE and Stephen Jones OBE to design a limited-edition enamel brooch for the new campaign. This is available from

Sue Farrington Smith MBE, Chief Executive of Brain Tumour Research, said: “Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone, at any age. Sadly, the high-profile supporters appearing in this advertising campaign have all been personally affected in some way by this devastating disease.

“It’s so touching to see how they have embraced Wear A Hat Day and worked closely with the charity to raise awareness of this cause. Their dedication is genuine and inspiring. Alongside passionate supporters up and down the country, we can’t wait to put our hats on, have some fun and raise money to fund sustainable research that will bring us closer to a cure for brain tumours.”

Wear A Hat Day has raised over a million pounds since it was launched by the charity Brain Tumour Research nine years ago and is the culmination of Brain Tumour Awareness Month in March. The big day will see schools, workplaces, families and individuals across the UK fundraising and taking part in fun events to raise awareness of brain tumours and help fund life-saving research.

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. Funds raised through Wear A Hat Day 2018 will develop the charity’s network of world-class brain tumour research centres in the UK.

To get involved, or donate, please visit:

Or text HAT to 70660 to donate £5*


* Texts cost £5 plus network charge. Brain Tumour Research receives 100% of your donation. Obtain the bill payer’s permission. Call 01908 867200 with any queries.


For further information, please contact:
Caroline Marrows at Brain Tumour Research on 01908 867221 or 07714 743764 or


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 January 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.