December 2010: Sheila Hancock launches ‘Wall of Hope’ at the University of Portsmouth’s brain tumour research centre


In December 2010, Actor, Author and Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth, Sheila Hancock launched our first ‘Wall of Hope’ to raise £1 million for research at the University of Portsmouth. The wall marks the launch of Brain Tumour Research’s national £7 million ‘Centres of Hope’ fundraising campaign to raise £7m for seven dedicated brain tumour research centres to get seven times closer to a cure for brain tumours.


Sheila Hancock, whose grandson Jack was diagnosed with a brain tumour, is calling on local businesses, organisations and Portsmouth residents to help raise £1 million to fund brain tumour research at the centre by sponsoring a day of research for £2,740 which will be recognised by a commemorative plaque on the centre’s ‘Wall of Hope’ as well as on our website


The ‘Centre’, under the leadership of Professor Geoff Pilkington, is one of seven planned to address the serious under-funding of research into the UK’s biggest cancer killer of children and adults under 40. In the UK, brain tumours kill more children than leukaemia or any other cancer; more women under the age of 35 than breast or any other cancer; and more men under the age of 45 than prostate or any other cancer, yet brain tumour research receives less than 1% of national cancer research spending.


Sheila Hancock says:“My grandson Jack was diagnosed with a brain tumour at the age of four - we were incredibly lucky Jack’s tumour was low grade and he lives a normal healthy life now, but it is terrible to watch a family member go through the diagnosis and treatment of a brain tumour. I implore you to get involved and buy as many days as you can on the ‘Wall of Hope’ to support vital research here at the University of Portsmouth’s dedicated Centre”.


Geoff Pilkington, Professor of Cellular & Molecular Neuro-oncology at the University of Portsmouth comments: “Previous discoveries in the area of brain tumours have not translated into significant clinical progress because the lack of funding has prevented sustainable research.  I strongly believe that what my colleagues and I are doing at the Portsmouth Centre will eventually result in real benefit for the 16,000 patients diagnosed with brain tumours each year.”



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