Pedalling towards a cure: Leeds brain tumour patient takes on third charity cycle challenge
A brain tumour patient is calling on his fellow Leeds residents to join him for the national On Yer Bike challenge and fundraise for the Brain Tumour Research charity.
For the third year running, Rory will be cycling to raise vital funds towards research into brain tumours – a disease which he has lived with for seven years. Taking place in February, On Yer Bike is a chance for everyone – from committed cyclists to those more used to the odd spinning class at the gym or cycling as a family – to get involved and raise money for a great cause.
Rory suffers from balance issues and epilepsy but despite this he is determined to take part and will go the distance on a static bike in his flat. He said: “Taking part in On Yer Bike over the years has been great fun and I want to encourage as many people as possible to give it a go. My personal challenge this year is to cycle 30km in one hour without having a seizure.
“For patients like myself whose lives have been turned upside down by a brain tumour diagnosis, exercise can play a crucial part in emotional and physical wellbeing. For others, getting ‘on yer bike’ is simply a great way to get active and make a difference.”
Rory’s diagnosis came in 2012 after he suffered a seizure whilst driving to work. He underwent wide-awake brain surgery, completed a year of treatment and now undergoes regular scans to monitor the tumour’s growth. In 2017, Rory cycled even though he was on chemotherapy and, in 2018, his cycle challenge raised £1,000 for the charity.
On Yer Bike has been running since 2012 when it was launched as a local event by brain tumour patient Paul Halfpenny from Derbyshire. Sadly, Paul passed away in 2014 but the event continued and now takes place nationwide. Participants select a sponsorship target, set up a fundraising page and, for the first time, can track their performance and ranking on the national leaderboard. Hundreds of others across the UK will be competing with Rory to see who can cover the most miles from 1 February to 23 February.
Matthew Price, community fundraising manager for Brain Tumour Research in the North East, said: “Rory’s support for the charity over the years has been incredible. Despite dealing with all the devastating effects of his brain tumour, Rory is still determined to fundraise and improve outcomes for future patients. We hope he will inspire others and many more people will get on their bike this February.
“Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer yet, historically, just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease, and Brain Tumour Research is proud to be changing this. Together we will find a cure.”
Brain Tumour Research funds sustainable research at dedicated Centres of Excellence in the UK; it also campaigns for the Government and the larger cancer charities to invest more in research into brain tumours in order to speed up new treatments for patients and, ultimately, to find a cure. The charity is calling for an annual spend of £35m in order to improve survival rates and patient outcomes in line with other cancers such as breast cancer and leukaemia.
To sign up for On Yer Bike, go to www.onyerbikechallenge.org
To donate to Rory’s fundraiser, go to https://onyerbike.everydayhero.com/uk/rory
For further information, please contact:
Farel James at Brain Tumour Research on 01908 867221 or 07592 502708 or Farel.James@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 ground-breaking research 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) which published its report Brain Tumours A cost too much to bear? in 2018. Led by the charity, the report examines the economic and social impacts of a brain tumour diagnosis. We are also a key player 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
- Historically, 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.