South Yorkshire staff and customers support cancer charity as part five year partnership

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Staff and customers of Barnsley Premier Leisure, who operate a number of leisure facilities throughout Yorkshire, are going all out to raise funds for their local cancer charity, as part of a 5 year partnership.

(BPL) and Weston Park Cancer Charity announced details of a major new five year partnership earlier this year, as part of a commitment to support cancer patients across the region.

The partnership will see BPL support the work of the cancer charity over the next few years in a bid to help raise vital funds.

Weston Park Hospital is one of only a handful of specialist cancer hospitals in England and treats patients from all over South Yorkshire, North Nottinghamshire and North Derbyshire – a population of almost 1.8million people.

Weston Park Cancer Charity is the only dedicated charity for the hospital and exists to support the world-class cancer research and to improve the treatment and care for people living with cancer.

Whilst employees across the venues are supporting the charity’s work through various incentives, 1 BPL member from Barnsley is also planning a courageous fundraiser this September after being diagnosed with terminal cancer a few months ago and receiving treatment at Weston Park Hospital.

Jonathan Booth (36) from Monk Bretton is just weeks away from starting a 15 day, 1000 mile cycle ride from John O’ Groats to Land’s End despite receiving a diagnosis of terminal cancer.

Keen photographer, Jonathan, was first diagnosed with saliva gland cancer back in 2003 and underwent surgery and received radiotherapy at Weston Park Hospital. After being in the clear for a few years, the cancer then returned in 2007 when Jonathon underwent another round of Radiotherapy. This summer, Jonathan was given the devastating news that his cancer had spread to his stomach and liver and was now terminal.

“I couldn’t believe it when they told me my cancer had returned,” said Jonathan. “My options are very limited now in terms of treatment and the future is somewhat uncertain, but whilst I’m still physically able to do so, I want to set a real example and encourage others going through similar situations to never give up!”

Jonathan, who climbed on a bike for the first time just over a month ago and has since been training at Fitness Flex daily, says the challenge will be tough but he is adamant to complete the distance whilst raising funds and awareness for Weston Park Cancer Charity.

“More than anything, I want people to realise what a vital service the hospital provides to cancer patients in our region. The charity plays a key role in enhancing this service so that people like me can access the very best care and support throughout.”

Being supported on his challenge by BPL staff, Jonathan was delighted to find his own leisure venue supporting the work of the hospital where he is being treated.

One member of staff who has supported Jonathon in the lead up to his challenge is Fitness Supervisor at Fitness Flex Metrodome, Terry Forrest.

Terry, who has worked at the venue for just over a year, has also immersed himself into fundraising for Weston Park Cancer Charity in the past year, completing a 110 mile challenge which saw him tackle three marathons and an ultra-marathon over four consecutive weekends.

Completing all four events in good time, Terry has raised over an impressive £500 for the cancer charity and is already planning his next running challenge.

Terry (32) from Normanton said, “From a personal perspective I am hoping to use this unique partnership between BPL and Weston Park Cancer Charity to help support and inspire others into healthier lifestyle choices as much as possible.”

“My 110 mile challenge was a great start but I believe that together we can encourage others to help raise much more money and begin their journeys to healthier and happier lifestyles.”

“I love Jonathan’s enthusiasm and never say never attitude and I’m really looking forward to helping him achieve his goals with his cycling challenge.”

Jonathan’s challenge will be funded by a Peak District based charity- Challenge Cancer Through Adventure, who enable cancer patients to undertake outdoor challenges by funding their trips.

To support Jonathan’s cycling challenge in support of Weston Park Cancer Charity this September visit: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Hub-LifeCycle

Throughout 2016 Weston Park Cancer Charity will fund various projects to enable the continued improvement of Weston Park Hospital; including the expansion of research studies, improving the way cancer treatments are delivered and supporting the ongoing care provisions of patients and their families affected by cancer.

To find out more about completing an active challenge for Weston Park Cancer Charity visit: http://www.wphcancercharity.org.uk/how_to_support_weston_park_hospital_cancer_charity.html