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Press release

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

“Take my place” says hero who suffered freak leg break metres from the London Marathon finish line Charity invites people to #RunForAngus

“Take my place” says hero who suffered freak leg break metres from the London Marathon finish line Charity invites people to #RunForAngus

A runner who collapsed in agony after a freak leg break just yards from the London Marathon finish line has launched a campaign for people to run in his place in 2019.

Angus Cameron, 45, was on track to complete this year’s event in a personal best time, but instead, had to be wheeled across the finish line on a stretcher after his thigh bone snapped due to an undiagnosed stress fracture.

He immediately vowed to be back on the start line for the 2019 event but, six months on and only just free of crutches, his doctors have told him he won’t be well enough. Now Angus, who was running to raise money for the Brain Tumour Research charity, is hoping others will step up to the mark and take his place.

He said: “I was hoping, perhaps optimistically, to have been training again by now but in July I had a major setback with my recovery when one of the screws implanted in my leg snapped and I was back at square one. After six months, the pain has finally eased and I’m finally beginning to walk without my crutches, but someone else will have to take my place at London Marathon 2019.

“My running days aren’t over and a goal of mine is to complete another marathon, hopefully in 2020. Even if I have to walk it! My motivation was, and continues to be, finding a cure for brain tumours. I’ve lost two friends to this disease and I can’t sit back and watch as more and more families are left devastated. I may not be back on my feet again in time for 2019 but in the meantime, I hope I can encourage others to take on the challenge and help fund the fight against brain tumours.”

The dad-of-three’s 2018 challenge was inspired by two of his close friends affected by brain tumours. Edward Andrew Morrison died from the disease three months before the marathon, aged 42, and to add to Angus’ grief, he also lost friend Nick Greenfield two months after the marathon. Nick died at the age of 45, just one year after his brain tumour diagnosis. The disease kills more men under 45 than prostate cancer yet, historically, just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease.

Angus continued: “Yes, breaking my leg was horrific but it was nothing compared to what brain tumour patients, like Edward and Nick, have to suffer.”

Angus, who lives in Hackney with his wife and three children, has now returned to his job as a cancer researcher at Barts Cancer Institute, Queen Mary University of London.

Janice Wright, community fundraising manager at Brain Tumour Research, said: “Angus’ determination to fundraise and help raise awareness of brain tumours is remarkable and we are extremely grateful for his support. We hope he inspires others to run in his place and help us fund the fight against brain tumours and we’re inviting people who may have lost out on a ballot place to apply to run for Brain Tumour Research and to #RunForAngus.

“Sadly, Edward and Nick’s stories aren’t uncommon and the disease kills more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer. We cannot allow this desperate situation to continue.”

Tens of thousands of runners will pound the streets of the capital at Virgin Money London Marathon, the world’s most famous running event, on Sunday 28th April 2019. The public ballot has closed but charity places are available with Brain Tumour Research.

Brain Tumour Research funds sustainable research at Research 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 join Brain Tumour Research’s 2019 London Marathon team, contact Sarah Day at sarah@braintumourresearch.org

 

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 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
  • 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.

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