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

Hundreds of guitarists to descend on London festival for world record attempt

Hundreds of guitarists to descend on London festival for world record attempt

Guitarists are signing up to help break the world record for the largest electric guitar ensemble, all in aid of the Brain Tumour Research charity. 
 
The Great Guitar Challenge will take place on Sunday 22nd July at Ealing Blues Festival. Event organiser Dave Pile, who lost his mum to a brain tumour, is hoping to achieve the world record by recruiting 450 guitarists to play ‘Heroes’ by David Bowie. The current world record for the largest guitar ensemble was achieved by Sky Group (India) when 368 participants assembled at the Agri Expo in Dimapur, India. 
 
Adding a glimmer of stardust to the event, Scott Fuller, lead singer of tribute band The Thin White Duke, will accompany the ensemble on vocals. The event is also being supported by sponsors Blackstar amplification, who will provide a new Blackstar Fly 3 micro amp for all participants. 
 
Scott said: “To begin with, the prospect of leading a performance with potentially hundreds of guitarists, and hopefully beating a world record, seemed like it would be great fun. Then we learned of Dave's story and the efforts to raise money for the Brain Tumour Research charity and knew we just had to be involved. It seemed the least we could do.  
 
“David Bowie's ‘Heroes’ - a triumph of hope over adversity - seems the perfect song choice.  It will be an honour to be part of it and we hope that many more musicians will think the same and sign up to the event.” 
 
Life-long guitar enthusiast and carpenter Dave Pile organised The Great Guitar Challenge after losing his mother, June, to a brain tumour in March 2013, just months after her diagnosis.  
 
Dave said: “I’ve been raising money for the Brain Tumour Research charity 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.” 
 
Michael Thelwall, Head of Community Fundraising for Brain Tumour Research, said: “Dave’s world record attempt in aid of the Brain Tumour Research charity 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:
 
Annie Slinn at Brain Tumour Research 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 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.

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