Dale’s cancer heroes get top award for amazing efforts
DEDICATED volunteers who have helped raise more than £1million for life-saving cancer research have won a national award.
For more than four decades, members of the Teesdale Branch of Cancer Research UK, have tirelessly raised money to fund vital research into the disease.
Their hard work has been recognised by the charity’s annual Flame of Hope Awards which saw more than 800 individuals and groups nominated for 16 different awards this year.
The Flame of Hope Award, the charity’s highest accolade, celebrates the outstanding achievements of volunteers.
The Teesdale committee, which has about 20 active members, has received a Funding in the Community Flame of Hope Award and the ladies say they are “really chuffed”.
In normal years the awards are given out at a swanky ceremony and dinner in London. This year due to Covid-19 restrictions, they will be presented virtually, with recipients receiving a video conference call in an afternoon event on Thursday, October 22. However, members of the Teesdale group are unsure if they will be able to all meet for the presentation due to the additional local lockdown restrictions.
Committee member Pam Ashmore said they were delighted just to have been nominated and say winning the award is testament to the people of Teesdale and their generosity.
She added: “We all feel really chuffed. We were hoping to use the Cricket Club to meet and watch the presentation on their large screen, but because of the local lockdown restrictions we don’t know if that is possible.
“We wouldn’t have been able to do what we do without the support and help of everyone in the community.”
Last year Mrs Ashmore and fellow committee member Maureen Bainbridge, one of the original founders of the branch, were awarded individual Flame of Hope Awards. The group’s treasurer Brenda Thwaites was also awarded the accolade three years ago.
Mrs Ashmore added: “We’ve really struggled this year raising money, as a lot of charities have, because of Covid. Cancer Research UK has also had to postpone clinical trials and vital research because of the virus. Normally we would have had a number of fundraising events including my Pink Day, but they have all had to be cancelled.”
The ladies will be hoping to raise some cash though on Wednesday, October 28, when they have a stall on Barnard Castle market, selling Christmas cards, diaries, cushions, aprons and bags. Tickets for the annual Christmas draw raffle will also be available.
They are also looking into the possibility of organising a pre-Christmas car boot sale in town to boost funds but add if anyone wishes to support the charity can purchase festive cards from Pam Ashmore, Brenda Thwaites and Mary Lambert.