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In Hope

Just 1% of the national research spend has been allocated to this devastating disease

The diagnosis of a brain tumour is devastating, however there is hope. We have been fortunate to meet some very brave people who have survived to tell the tale and who want to share their story to give hope to others.

Recently published stories

Anna Binks

Anna Binks, 43, from East Yorkshire, had an MRI scan in 2010 after blood tests revealed high prolactin levels. The scan found a suspected low-grade glioma which doctors were happy to monitor with regular scans. Ten years later, the mum-of-two started suffering from headaches and dizzy spells. She had another scan which found she had a diffuse astrocytoma brain tumour. Anna’s son, Jacob, seven, has taken on Brain Tumour Research’s One Million Keepy Uppy Challenge along with his teammates at South Cave Under 8’s Blacks to help fund a cure.

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Matt Schlag

Matt Schlag, 44, from York, started getting regular migraines so severe they were affecting his behaviour. After concerns from his manager, Matt got an MRI scan which revealed an anaplastic astrocytoma brain tumour. Matt, dad to Reuben, two, and Anja, five, has gone through two operations, radiotherapy and chemotherapy. He’s now working with Brain Tumour Research and raised £3,000 after successfully completing the London to Brighton cycle ride in September 2022.

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Jill Kenton

Voiceover artist Jill Kenton had the shock of her life when, after experiencing relatively minor symptoms, she was diagnosed with a low-grade brain tumour. Facing surgery and fearing the worst, Jill faced crippling anxiety and could barely leave the house before deciding to seek another opinion and “take back control”.

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All stories

Arthur Ridout

When toddler Arthur Ridout, from Dorset, started having dizzy spells, vomiting and headaches at the end of 2021, his parents Simon and Lauren never suspected a brain tumour would be the cause of his symptoms. After several visits to the doctor and a worrying episode which led to a trip to A&E, little Arthur was finally diagnosed with a medulloblastoma in February 2022 and was operated on almost immediately. The three-year-old has since had further surgery, radiotherapy and is about to start a nine-month course of chemotherapy to treat his aggressive tumour. 

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Baljit Mehat

Baljit Mehat, a successful businessman and father-of four from Wakefield, West Yorkshire, was diagnosed with a brain tumour in October 2021 after becoming shaky and confused on his way to a football match. The 58-year-old underwent a craniotomy in November and a biopsy revealed that his tumour is a grade 4 glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). In January he started taking a drug called AZD1390 in combination with radiotherapy as part of a clinical trial. 

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Beatrice Williams

Grandma-of-four Beatrice, an artist, was 30 years old when she was first diagnosed with an acoustic neuroma brain tumour, which was removed by surgery. She thought she had seen the back of the disease when, in 2014, an examination following a minor head injury showed that her tumour had recurred. While recovering, Beatrice learnt to paint and now, having recently celebrated her 50th wedding anniversary, she is sharing her story to bring hope to patients and families. Read more

Ben Anderson

Fourteen-year-old Young Scout Leader Ben Anderson went to the optician for a check up at the end of the summer holidays. Within hours he was referred to hospital and a scan revealed he had a brain tumour. Immediate action was required and Ben underwent surgery. He recovered well but needed further treatment, this time in the US, to halt the growth of his tumour. Despite the gruelling treatment and disruption caused to his schooling, Ben did well in his GCSEs and is now studying for a career which he hopes will see him working with children with special needs.

“My world had been turned upside town. I had walked into the opticians with a child who seemed perfectly healthy and was just days away from going into year 10 to start his GCSE courses. Less than 24 hours later my son was diagnosed with a brain tumour and needed life-saving surgery. I was 29 weeks pregnant. When Ben turned to me and said: ‘I really want to be here to meet my new baby brother or sister. Am I going to die mum?’ I told him no, he wasn’t going to die and we would do whatever was needed.”
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Ben Hurd

Ben Hurd is 33 and is living with a grade 4 glioblastoma multiforme brain tumour. He has been told that the coronavirus pandemic means his ongoing chemotherapy and next MRI scan will be delayed and is worried that time is against him.

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Ben Lindon

Ben Lindon was diagnosed with an inoperable aggressive oligodendroglioma brain tumour on March 11, 2008, a week before his 29th birthday. He underwent radiotherapy treatment and 120 cycles of chemotherapy – thought to be a record for a UK patient. Amazingly, having been told that all his treatment would render him infertile, he went on to father two miracle children, Martha and Sid.

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Beth Harris

Mother-of-one Beth Harris was going about her usual weekend routine and had taken part in a parkrun just hours before she started to experience the symptoms of a brain tumour for the first time. After having multiple seizures, she was rushed to hospital and an MRI scan revealed she had a grade 2 or 3 glioma. Beth has been forced to give up her career as a swimming teacher and lifeguard, after suffering side effects from her tumour. She married her long-term partner Cellan in February 2021 and is determined to find a cure for the deadly disease.

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Beth Parker

When Beth Parker, 27, from Liverpool, went into surgery to remove a brainstem tumour, she was told there was a 20% chance she wouldn’t survive. If she did survive, there was a long list of potentially life-changing risks. Thankfully, the operation was a success and she is on the road to recovery after her ordeal. Beth’s diagnosis with a low-grade haemangioblastoma came after years of trying to convince doctors that her symptoms were real and not ‘just a migraine’. She is now keen to share her story and is fundraising for Brain Tumour Research, to help others facing this devastating diagnosis. 

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Bethan Lock

Bethan from Cardiff says she owes her life to her mental health nurse who encouraged her to get a scan. Doctors initially thought the 36-year-old, mother-of-two could be suffering from post-natal depression. When her behaviour became erratic, she was admitted to a psychiatric facility for four months. Her symptoms continued and became physically noticeable as she developed facial palsy. In 2011, weeks after she was discharged and two years after her symptoms began, Bethan had a CT scan and she was told she had an acoustic neuroma brain tumour.

A decade after her diagnosis, Bethan has continued to navigate motherhood whilst training to be a barrister, and living with the side effects of a brain tumour.

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Bethany Louita

Bethany was just nine when an apparent minor allergy to oranges preceded her shock brain tumour diagnosis. Her Mum, Trish, saw her little girl happily dancing around the kitchen to One Direction before screaming out that her head was on fire and collapsing. Despite the years of surgery, hospital appointments and medications that followed, Bethany is now a bright and positive fourteen-year-old, eager to live her life to the full while knowing that her condition will be life-long.

There’s a lot that I don’t completely understand, some things that I don’t even remember, but I still have to cope with it all anyway. The tumour doesn’t care if I understand or not.”

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