Politician Jeremy Hunt will switch Tory blue for pink when he takes part in Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life this summer.
The MP for South West Surrey will join thousands of other runners, joggers and walkers in Stoke Park, Guildford, on July 24.
The former Health Secretary and currently Chair of the Health and Social Care Select Committee, will be joined by cancer survivor Rod Pluthero from Haslemere.
The men will be running side by side and will be joined by fellow Conservative Angela Richardson, MP for Guildford.
The trio got in some practice for the 5k event at the Devil’s Punch Bowl. And during the session Mr Hunt revealed he has compelling reasons for supporting the cause.
He said: “Every member of my family has had cancer. Even I have had a minor one myself which has fortunately been resolved.
“Cancer has touched my family very dramatically and I know it has touched many other families too.
“My work on the Select Committee has shown me there are lot of things we can do to improve out cancer survival rates. They are getting better but the more we can do to raise money and awareness, the more lives we can save.”
As well as taking part in Race for Life, Mr Hunt, Ms Richardson and Mr Pluthero, are supporters of the campaign to establish the Cancer and Surgical Innovation Centre at the Royal Surrey Hospital in Guildford. Mr Hunt launched a multi-million pound appeal to establish the centre last year. Please support their particular local campaign by making a donation https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jeremy-hunt1
He said: “We’re taking part in Race for Life because it’s vital that the life-saving research Cancer Research UK carries out continues.
“It also perfectly complements what we are trying to achieve at the Royal Surrey – a state-of-the-art surgical facility which will deliver world-class surgery and peri-operative care.”
Ms Richardson said: “There will be few of us who have been untouched by cancer - with one in two people now developing it at some stage of our lives, research into successful treatments and prevention of the disease is an overwhelming health priority.
"Jeremy has been an advocate and champion of cancer research, advanced treatments and better patient experiences for many years. It's my pleasure to be able to join him at the Race for Life and for us to be taking forward this campaign together to allow the best possible outcomes for cancer patients in the future."
Mr Pluthero, 73, was successfully treated for cancer of the tongue in 2016 and again in 2018. But in 2020 he was given the devastating news he had squamous cell carcinoma in his lower right jaw. In a ten-and-a-half hour operation, surgeons removed part of his jaw and replaced it with bone from his fibula and saved his life.
He said: “We are all passionate about improving life for cancer patients from the moment they are diagnosed, right through any treatment they may need. We want to improve every aspect of that, developing better and kinder treatments and achieving better outcomes.
“By taking part in Race for Life, people are funding research into life-saving discoveries, less harsh treatments and ways to educate people about lifestyle choices. And they are also helping to keep loved ones together for longer, see people reach milestone birthdays and bring forward the day when all 200 types of cancer are cured.
“We need to work together on this. As Cancer Research UK says: ‘Together, we will beat cancer’.”
Every year around 55,800 people are diagnosed with cancer in the South East* and one in two people in the UK born after 1960 will get cancer in their lifetime.**
Money raised at Race for Life enables scientists to find new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer - helping to save more lives.
Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life, in partnership with Tesco, is an inspiring nationwide series of 3k, 5k, 10k, Pretty Muddy and Pretty Muddy Kids events which raise millions of pounds every year to help beat cancer by funding crucial research.
The Race for Life Guildford events are open to people of all ages and abilities.***
Women, men and children can choose from 3k and 5k events on Sunday July 24th. They can also take part in Pretty Muddy, a mud-splattered obstacle course, the day before, the 23rd, with a Pretty Muddy Kids option too.
Lynn Daly, Cancer Research UK’s spokesperson in the South East, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to Jeremy, Angela and Rod for their support.
“Sadly, cancer affects all of us in some way but together we will beat cancer. Whether people are living with cancer, taking part in honour of or in memory of a loved one with cancer or signing up to protect their own children’s future, everyone has a reason to Race for Life. So we’re asking people across Surrey, ‘Who will you Race for?’
“Our Race for Life events are open to all. For some people, the Race for Life is literally a walk in the park. Slow and steady still wins. For others, it’s a jog. Others may opt to push themselves harder, taking up the challenge of the 10K distance and even pushing for a new personal best time.
“We’re looking forward to welcoming people of all ages and abilities. Race for Life Guildford will be fun, emotional, colourful, uplifting and an unforgettable event this year.”
Race for Life events across the UK will follow current government guidance to protect against COVID-19. Hand sanitiser will be provided.
Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life, in partnership with Tesco, raises funds for world-class research to help beat 200 types of cancer – including bowel cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer, testicular cancer, brain cancer, children’s cancers and leukaemia.
Oonagh Turnbull, Head of Health Campaigns at Tesco, said: “This will be our 21st year in partnership with Cancer Research UK and Race for Life and we hope this year can be the biggest yet.”
To enter, visit raceforlife.org
For more about the campaign for the Cancer and Surgical Innovation Centre: Royal Surrey Charity
About Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life
Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life, in partnership with Tesco, is an inspiring series of 3k, 5k, 10k, Pretty Muddy and Pretty Muddy Kids events which raise millions of pounds every year to help beat cancer by funding life-saving research.
- Money raised through Race for Life events funds world-class research to help beat 200 types of cancer. including bowel cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer, testicular cancer, brain cancer, children’s cancers and leukaemia.
- Find out more and sign up at raceforlife.org
About Cancer Research UK
- Cancer Research UK is the world’s leading cancer charity dedicated to saving lives through research.
- Cancer Research UK’s pioneering work into the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer has helped save millions of lives.
- Cancer Research UK has been at the heart of the progress that has already seen survival in the UK double in the last 40 years.
- Today, 2 in 4 people survive their cancer for at least 10 years. Cancer Research UK’s ambition is to accelerate progress so that by 2034, 3 in 4 people will survive their cancer for at least 10 years.
- Cancer Research UK supports research into all aspects of cancer through the work of over 4,000 scientists, doctors and nurses.
- Together with its partners and supporters, Cancer Research UK's vision is to bring forward the day when all cancers are cured.
- Tesco is in its 21st year of partnership with Race for Life.
- Around 20,000 Tesco colleagues and customers take part each year.
- Tesco colleagues and customers have contributed over £60m for Cancer Research UK
- More than 400,000 colleagues and customers have taken part in Race for Life since 2002
- Tesco pays the entry fee for all colleagues wishing to enter a Race for Life event.
- You can read more at www.tescoplc.com