Entertainer and Brighter Futures patron Rory Bremner will be hosting a special event at the Great Western Hospital on Tuesday 19 April as the Radiotherapy Appeal reaches £500,000.
Rory and the Brighter Futures team will be joined by trustees of the Dr Thomas Cranston Wilson Charitable Trust, whose generous donation of £50,000 has helped tipped the appeal over the half a million mark.
Brighter Futures launched the Radiotherapy Appeal last May in a bid to raise the £2.9 million needed to make radiotherapy treatment available in Swindon, meaning local cancer patients will no longer have to make the 70-mile round trip to Oxford.
Rory Bremner said: “When we first launched the appeal for £2.9 million it looked a big mountain to climb.
“At £500,000, we’re well on the way. Now we need a huge push for the top. Let’s make this happen so no-one has to travel over two hours for vital radiotherapy.”
Sir John Sykes, Chair of the Swindon-based Dr Thomas Cranston Wilson Charitable Trust, said: “As a local Charitable Trust, we are delighted to help projects to improve the provision of medical services and equipment which benefit the quality of life of patients and their families in the Great Western Hospital area.
“The provision of radiotherapy treatment in Swindon is long overdue and the appeal has our maximum support with our £50,000 donation.
“We hope this will spur the community on to support the appeal in every way and see this service up and running as soon as possible.”
Jennifer Green, Head of Fundraising for Brighter Futures, said: “We are truly grateful to the Dr Thomas Cranston Wilson Charitable Trust for this very generous gift. Our Radiotherapy Appeal has now reached the £500,000 mark, which is incredible.
“We now need more local people, businesses and organisations to get behind our appeal. Bringing cancer care closer to home will make a massive difference to so many local families.
“Contact Brighter Futures on 01793 605631 or visit our website www.brighterfuturesgwh.nhs.uk to find out how you can show your support.”
Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is working in partnership with Oxford University Hospitals Foundation Trust, to expand its radiotherapy service with a new facility at the Great Western Hospital in Swindon.
Tuesday’s event will be an opportunity for radiotherapy patients, fundraisers, and staff from both the Great Western Hospital and Oxford Cancer Centre to talk about the appeal and the new radiotherapy service.
Dr Claire Blesing, Radiotherapy Head of Service and Clinical Director of Oncology and Haematology at the Oxford Cancer Centre, said: “Our aim to reduce the travel time for patients from Swindon and the Wiltshire area who are receiving radiotherapy in our hospitals is moving a step closer.
“We are extremely proud of the excellent facilities and services that we provide at the Churchill Hospital in Oxford, and the new satellite radiotherapy unit will provide treatment to the same high standard, but reduce the travel time and inconvenience for many of our patients.”
The £2.9 million being raised by Brighter Futures will fund the expensive specialist equipment needed to provide radiotherapy treatment.