Friday, 31 July 2009
For the full story go to the Guardian website by clicking HERE.
In a recent interview Sir Bobby was upbeat and positive about his illness. “I’m in my 76th year. I’ve had a fantastic sporting life, but I’ve had cancer five times. None of my four brothers has had cancer. I keep saying I’ve had their share. But I consider myself lucky. I may have had cancer five times but thanks to the wonderful treatment I have had through the NHS my life has been saved".
Please Visit the Bobby Robson Cancer Foundation Website by clicking HERE
To Make a donation to Sir Bobby's Just Giving Page click HERE.
Sir Bobby Robson. R.I.P
Wednesday, 29 July 2009
Monday, 27 July 2009
Catherine Nicholas from Tregare, who is already the youngest owner of a rare champion pig, has added two more rosettes to her name at the Llanelwedd showground in mid-Wales.
Catherine, who is battling leukaemia since being diagnosed in August, was named champion in the traditional breed category with her seven month-old pig, a rare British Lop called Giltedge Harmony.
She was also named first-time exhibitor and is believed to be the youngest entrant the competition has seen.
Mum, Rachel, said her daughter was determined to attend the event.
After finishing a session of chemotherapy on Sunday she travelled to the Royal Welsh to show Giltedge Harmony.
"She took part in Tuesday morning’s event to exhibit Giltedge Harmony and was back in hospital in Cardiff at lunchtime where she underwent a platelet transfusion," she added.
"We were back in Mid-Wales that evening ready for the Show on Wednesday," said Rachel.
"She is thrilled to have won," she added.
Catherine has acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, and has had eight transfusions in the past four weeks.
She requires a further 18 months of chemotherapy.
Abergavenny pony producer Jayne Shields, of Ysbytty Farm, and her show-team are celebrating after Megan Thompson, six and Mrs Shields’ neice Lilly Garnett, 11, scooped three rosettes riding Cwmllanwenarth Melody, seven years and Lochlar Red Gauntlet aged six years, respectively.
Cwmllanwenarth Melody won the lead rein show pony class and championship, whilst Lochlar Red Gauntlet, a show hunter pony won the show hunter pony class.
Our 'living memorial' to loving son Anton
The couple of Bulbrook donated the huge sum to The Cancer Centre at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford after they raised the money through a range of events and from the charity shop.
Tony said: “We’re very proud and very happy and thankful to the people who have helped us raise this money.”
The couple set up the Anton Day Smile Foundation earlier this year and opened their charity shop at Moss End Garden Centre in Warfield on May 24 – the day that would have been Anton’s 25th birthday.
Shop to boost Anton's fund
They gave the cheque to representatives from the hospital on Wednesday last week.
Tony added: “Today is a big step as it is the first bit of money that we’ve given to them.
“It will go towards a garden that’s being built in the middle of the ward Anton was in and it will be called the Anton Day Garden.
“It has to be artificial because people who have what Anton had have a very low immune system so the risk of infection has to be kept to a minimum.”
The garden will cost £50,000 but the hospital is building it and the charity will fund the work in stages.
Charity in memory of Anton Day launched
The Anton Day Smile Foundation is doing better than Tony and Vanessa expected. Initially they hoped to raise around £250 per week from the shop, staffed by volunteers, but they say it is making closer to £600.
Tony said: “The first £10,000 has taken us a while to raise but I think it will only be six to eight weeks before we make the next £10,000.”
It seems so long.
but when you think of it in real time, it amounts to
24 years, 133 days 20 hours
That's how long Anton's life was
Far too soon. Far too young. Far too cruel.
Anton knew that he would die young.
He had known it from the day he was first diagnosed.
But he never once gave up, he fought to the very end,
with courage, strength, integrity, a smile always on his face, and true heroism.
He will always be our smiling Hero.
He never complained, he never asked why me?
But a few days before Anton passed away he said to me
"Mum, i believe I know why I am to die young.
"By my doing so many people will be helped by the charity.
"We will be able to give others memories and smiles."
Anton never lost his amazing smile.
And from this the Anton Day Smile Foundation was born.
NICE has decided that rituximab should be made available as a first-line treatment, but only if used in combination with fludarabine and cyclophosphamide chemotherapy.
Rituximab is a type of biological therapy called a monoclonal antibody, which targets a protein on the surface of leukaemia cells.
The antibody attaches to these proteins so that the body's immune system recognises the need to destroy the cells.
Clinical trials of rituximab have shown that it can stop the disease from progressing for 10.5 months longer than chemotherapy alone, typically increasing progression-free survival from 2.7 years to 3.5 years.
It was also found to double the number of CLL patients who achieved complete remission compared with chemotherapy alone (36 per cent compared with 17 per cent).
Commenting on the decision to approve rituximab, Dr Carole Longson, director of the institute's Health Technology Evaluation Centre, said that the guidance "increases the treatment options available to people with this condition, wherever they live in England and Wales".
"After looking at all of the available evidence, the independent appraisal committee concluded that rituximab, when used as a first-line treatment for people with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia who are able to take fludarabine in combination with cyclophosphamide, represented an effective use of NHS resources," she explained.
Professor John Gribben, consultant haematologist and medical oncologist at Barts and the London NHS Trust, said that the NICE guidance is "great news" for both patients and clinicians as the therapy provides "significant benefits compared to chemotherapy alone".
He revealed: "The ability to add rituximab to chemotherapy is a major advance in the way we can treat chronic lymphocytic leukaemia.
"Where previously our goal was just to improve symptoms, for the first time we now have a treatment combination that is capable of producing much higher remission rates and more durable responses."
Professor Peter Johnson, Cancer Research UK's chief clinician, said: "Rituximab has already had a big impact on the chances of survival for patients with lymphoma. This new announcement is further good news for patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia.
"The development of this drug is an excellent example of how quality scientific research continues helping us to make progress in developing new drugs."
(Source: Cancer research UK.Website HERE.)
Highs and Lows ?
Highs would be the day out to The Thursford Experience which was absolutely superb, especially watching Mr Robert Wolfe playing his huge organ (Wurlitzer....oh do behave! anyway, here is Roberts website ) on the stage followed by a ride on the two awesome vintage Carousels that they have at the museum, superb.
The boat trip on the Norfolk broads was also a terrific day out for the whole family as was the drive across to Walsingham and the return trip to Hemsby via the coastal road route. If you have never come "Off Piste" when touring the Norfolk area then i recommend that you give it a whirl as the amount of fantastic, empty beaches that you will find beggars belief and it is such a refreshing change to not have to fight for a square meter of sand :-).
There was only one real "Low" during the week, and this sadly turned out to be the one event that I was really looking forward too......the Lowestoft Air Festival.
Things started off well, we managed to get the clan up, washed and fed on time.We left the chalet at about 11am, then made our way towards Lowestoft via the Great Yarmouth route.Within a few miles we had hit awful traffic, but hey, this was going to be soooo worth it...i thought!.
We arrived at the Dip Farm Park and ride at about 12:05PM, and after paying £10 for the Park and Ride fare, we left the family bus and headed towards the rather worryingly long queue for the bus service.It took us about 25-30 mins to eventually get on board on of the vehicles, and so we then set off for the short ride down to the Lowestoft seafront.
I was aware of the fact that this was a VERY busy event, but nothing prepared me for the awful experience that lay ahead for us.
After leaving the bus, paying our donation of £10 for entry into the viewing area (seafront!), we joined the fray,only to find ourselves being swept along by a huge crowd, all looking for somewhere to pitch up a deckchair !.
The main problem was that someone in their wisdom had decided to site a large funfair, complete with the obligatory "Bloody noisy" touts trying to get you to have a gamble and win a giant cuddly toy (Why?).This added to the fun in so much as that now not only could you see the aeroplanes that were (apparently) doing displays along the seafront,but,due to the 2 gobby gits with the microphones who were annoying the crap out of me with their persistent use of canned laughter and pre recorded adverts telling us to try and win a 6ft tigga tiger and some other Dell Boy character selling "Hooky" perfume,we could not even hear the commentary over the system......Great !.
We eventually found refuge in some sort of life buoy stowage building along the front, set up our folding chairs and tried to look on the bright side.Sadly we found this impossible to do after several rather selfish gits (who by the way made terrible windows) decided to sit on the wall directly in front of us blocking the little view that we had of the beach/seafront which was completely covered in folk trying to find a square centimeter of open ground.
I took mini me off to the Airfix demo tent to try and keep his mind away from wandering off, and it was after we had been there for about 10 mins that I received a call from Teresa saying that this was just mad and that we should get out now!.......sadly, i had to agree, so after joining the rest of the group we headed back to the park and ride bus and set off dejectedly for the car park.
The conductor asked why we had decided to come back so early...my response was unprintable !.
Anyway, at least we got to see the Lancaster and Spitfire (from the car park!), and later the Vulcan (from a caravan park further down the coast, so all was not entirely lost, and at least I now know why it is called "The Lowestoft Air Festival"...because as you will find out if you ever decide to attend.....you will find that "Air" is hard to come by when you are crammed into such a ridiculously small area of land with 210,000 others. Shame :-(
Erm.................................................Excuse me!, but has Anyone seen any aeroplanes around here ?
Sunday, 26 July 2009
I will post up some piccies when I get time enough to fart, but at this current time (06.30am!) i am just getting ready to take the car and trailer to the Heckington show that I mentioned in a post just over a week ago.
Of course, having only arrived home from said hols yesterday afternoon, i have had precious time to do anything to the old girl other than give her a jet wash last night, so i will have to take some polish with me and sort out her "yes i am a daily drive car and don't I look mucky next to your "only comes out of the garage for shows" motor!" look :-)
Anyway, things to do, sandwiches to pack and flasks to fill. Keep an eye out for some pictures from the event over the next few days...or at least when i get my self organised, and that may take some time :-). Andy
Friday, 17 July 2009
In November 2008, I developed a rash and had been experiencing very high temperatures. I visited two GP's who both diagnosed a hives-like condition. One prescribed me antihistamines and steroids, the other antihistamines and made a referral for me to see a dermatologist. I then saw my own GP, Dr Robert Wicks, still feeling very unwell, but the rash was masked by the steroids I was taking. He prescribed me antibiotics for my presenting infections.
I was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia with accompanying Sweets Syndrome. I was then to learn Sweets Syndrome is a very rare condition and occasionally accompanies certain malignancies and certainly not an easy rash to diagnose at face value.
I pondered over this diagnosis as I learnt Acute Myeloid Leukaemia can kill within months or weeks if left untreated. The feelings I experienced were uncertainty, insecurity and extreme vulnerability, but I needn't have worried, because my eyes were about to be opened to what really goes on in the DGH and that is not just a few isolated cases of C.diff or MRSA.
I was admitted to the Pevensey ward where my chemotherapy began very quickly. I consider myself to be privileged to have been treated and looked after by the kindest, most dedicated team of professionals for the past six months.
I have now finished my treatment and would like to thank Dr Grace my consultant, a truly honest, popular, humorous dedicated doctor, with boundless energy, who has my highest respect and that of many others deservedly.
Sister Janice Talent played a huge part in my treatment. She is an amazing nurse, who never sits still and no task, however menial, is beyond her – a true team player and a meticulous professional. You have talent Jan and are a huge asset to your team and any patient that is looked after by you is truly honoured.
Thank you to the other nurses. A special thank you goes to Gilbert who has pampered me throughout my endless stays on the ward. Thank you to Mick, Gilbert's colleague, you have been truly kind.
I am now in complete remission and I feel totally secure in the knowledge that should my leukaemia return, that I will be given the very best of care and treatment available, by our very own local ward, the Pevensey ward. You are truly the best!
Thursday, 16 July 2009
Wednesday, 15 July 2009
Thank you for putting up with me for the last 25 years (this includes 4 years on probation before she accepted my request for marriage !),thank you for giving me 3 totally mad, but ultimately great kids, and thank you for not throwing the laptop through the window...yet! (you know what I mean :-) ).
Hope you like the gifts that I have chosen for you, and also hope that you still know just how much you mean to me and the children.I know that things have been rather tough recently with one thing and another, but I hope that you know I will always be around for you if ever you need me (is that a good thing ? :-)).
Anyway, take care "duck", and here's looking forward to that holiday that we have been needing for the last few years starting in a few days time :-)
Love ya lots.Andy
Tuesday, 14 July 2009
A TEACHER will test his stamina by swimming 135 miles along the Thames next month to raise money for leukaemia research.
The challenge - the equivalent of six and a half trips across the English Channel - will see Kirkby Stephen Grammar School’s Mark Walsh spend five days submerged in the southern waterway, in memory of former colleague Dave Hicks.
The epic swim will start at Cricklade Bridge, Wiltshire in the early hours of August 24 and Mr Walsh, 34, and his brother Richard, 32, aim to arrive at Teddington Lock in the western suburbs of London in time for dinner four days later.
“We’re hoping to raise in excess of £2,500 and all the money will go to Leukaemia Research in memory of Dave Hicks, who was an IT technician at the grammar school,” explained the geography teacher.
“I worked with him for three years until he died in December and he was an all round good guy who is missed by all at the school. The students think I’m a bit mad doing this because it’s a long distance, but as I said to them: this is a test of my endurance just like teaching them is,” he joked.
As well as swimming the Caledonian Canal in Scotland, Mr Walsh and his brother swam 50 miles across each of the lakes in the Lake District in 2007 - a challenge the duo completed in less than 48 hours to raise thousands for Guide Dogs for the Blind.
For their latest test the teacher, from Hunters Croft in Kendal, is training at Kendal Leisure Centre and heading to Windermere at weekends where he is in the water for up to five hours.
“Only about six people have swum the Thames before and this is the biggest challenge we’ve set ourselves,” he continued. “It’s going to be tough because we are going to be swimming for ten to 12 hours a day for five days - doing around 28 miles a day which is more than the Channel. The only breaks will be when we have to get out at the locks too, of which there are about 42.
“It’s a challenge though and we’re up for it.”
To sponsor the siblings, log on to www.justgiving.com/riverthameschallenge2009/
Story courtesy of the westmorland gazette.Webpage is HERE.
Monday, 13 July 2009
I was made aware of it when I overheard Rachel telling Teresa that "The rabbit has had some babies!".I was in the back garden at the time and decided that obviously I had mis heard her comment as the rabbit (mother) in question had only been part of the family for a little over 3 and a half weeks, and had in that time (to the best of my knowledge!) not been involved in........erm.....natural persuits...!.........with any male rabbits during that time.
As I entered the house I commented about what I has overheard a few moments earlier, and was at that point advised that far from being mistaken, It was quite true that "Echo" (mum) had produced a litter of 5 kittens (baby rabbits...so i found when I googled the question!).
The main question now of course is "when was she...well, when did she.......erm.....WHO IS THE FATHER ?
The best guess must be that she was..got at.....in the week before I picked her up to bring her back home....either that or we are looking at a rabbit version of immaculate conception :-)
Saturday, 11 July 2009
She, along with her ATC friends did a fantastic job today, and all of them were a great credit to not only the Air training Corps, but also to their obviously proud families. Far too often people are very negative about the young of our country, but I can honestly say that today I saw a great bunch of young people who are a credit too their parents,Sleaford,the ATC and most importantly of all ....themselves.Well done to you all.
I was myself a member of the ATC many years ago, but as my home town was Mansfield, I was a member of 384 Squadron. Standing there today watching the event take place, i thought of my own experiences as a young lad in the Air Cadets all those many years ago, all the friends that I made,the meetings every Wednesday and Friday night, the summer camps,the rifle range and of course the flying experiences..........fantastic !.
Of course after I left the ATC I then went on to join the RAF and served with it for 12 years as an Airframes Technician, but this does not mean that all the young people who join the ATC are destined for the regular air force,but the experience that they gain by simply being part of the organisation is something that they will find invaluable in their future lives.
Anyway, as I said at the start of this blog entry, I just want to tell you Rachel how proud I was of you today, your a great daughter, and made your dad smile today when he saw you march up to receive your awards.well done :-)
Friday, 10 July 2009
Myself and Scarlett will be attending on the Sunday (can't get Saturday sadly ! :-( ), and of course we will have the now (in)famous trailer in tow.
For more details of what you can expect to find at this awesome venue, just click HERE to go to the official website.
Last week residents on Round 16 threw a huge party for Grant Ramsay, 60, who they said always looked out for them and once even saved a church from burning down.Mr Ramsay gave up his round to undergo treatment, but customers missed him so much they arranged for notes to be attached every milk bottle inviting neighbours to send cards.Kate Cheshire, 48, of Balham Park Road, said: “He is just the kindest man, and he has made us into a community. He looked out for everybody and put everybody before himself.“We wanted to say thank you. To us, he’s a local hero.”Mr Ramsay, who was born in the borough and now lives in Lucien Road in Tooting with his wife Linda, 59, was presented with more than 80 cards last Wednesday at St Mary’s Church in Balham.
The vicar was only too glad to host the celebrations, since Mr Ramsay had once spotted the church ablaze and called in the fire brigade.Mr Ramsay has now set himself the task of writing back to every card - at a rate of 20 per day.The much-loved milkman is undergoing a two-year treatment programme after discovering his illness at Christmas while giving blood.He said: “I miss my round. When you talk to people, it’s so nice - I couldn't be stuck in an office all day.
“I would like to thank my customers for all their loyalty and commitment over the years. The people of Balham have done me proud.
This story was published by "Your local guardian.co.uk".To visit their site, please click HERE.
Thursday, 9 July 2009
Tuesday, 7 July 2009
Press Packer Jake had leukaemia - cancer of the blood - but tried to keep a positive attitude while he got better.This is his story:
Click Here for the full story on the CBBC Website.
Monday, 6 July 2009
Sam, 13, was playing in a cup final when he was accidentally kneed in the lip during a challenge. He suffered a cut to the mouth which took a long time to stop bleeding.
Read the full story about how a rugby injury inadvertently saved this young fellas life!.Click here to go to the story at the Daily Express website.
This, despite juggling studies, visits to doctors and coping with the stress of an illness.
“A few months before the exam, I was nervous, but I was sure I had to appear,” said Bhakti, the determination in her voice evident.
“Thanks to the support from my professors, friends and family members, I soldiered on,” said Bhakti.
She has had to complete nine cycles of treatment that included 30 chemotherapies and nine radiation sessions.
Also, the treatment cost was too steep for Bhakti’s family. Her father, Umesh, is a real estate agent. They live in Jogeshwari (East).
Due to the stigma attached to her disease, she lost out on many of her school and college friends. “Now I am left with only two college friends who have been there for me through thick and thin,” Bhakti said.
Her best friend Kinjal Shah, said: “I have learnt a lot from Bhakti. She is an inspiration for me.”
Her professors too have a word of praise for Bhakti.
“During my 22 years of teaching, I have not come across anyone like her,” said Professor Sonali Chatterjee. “She did not opt for a writer despite having difficulty writing papers.”
She now aspires to do an MBA, after which she hopes to reach out to cancer patients in whatever way she can.
Today, Bhakti’s ailment is down from 77 per cent to two per cent although she has been advised to continue chemo-therapy at regular intervals.
“One should never lose hope,” is Bhakti’s credo in life.
Bhakti believes her family’s encouragement has helped translate her dreams into reality.
“We do not know what life has in store,” said Bhakti’s mother, Geeta. “But, as parents we want to make her strong enough to face anything that comes her way.”
Mum-of-two Karla Neckles from Hainault has been given the gift of life after being told she only had weeks to live.
Sunday, 5 July 2009
Click here to read more.
(Content from the Irish Medical News)
Friday, 3 July 2009
Adam Huttlestone, who now lives in Cheltenham, is raising funds for The Tracy Sollis Leukaemia Trust by undertaking a 1,000-mile unaided bike ride from John O’Groats to Land’s End.
The 28-year-old, who went to school with Tracy, begins his mammoth ride in the early hours of Monday and is aiming to complete 100 miles a day.
He said: “Cycling from John O’Groats to Land’s End has always been something I wanted to do so I thought I might as well do it for a good cause.”
Adam is hoping to raise about £2,500.
Anyone who wishes to sponsor Adam can do so by visiting http://www.justgiving.com/adamhuttlestone/
So come on Folks.Spare a few quid and make this excellent challenge a great success....i will be ! :-)
Here is a link to the Tracy Sollis Trust website: click here