AN Alcester man has signed up to raise money for a cause close to his and his girlfriend’s hearts.
Bradleigh Phelps will be cycling the 300 miles from London to Paris over four days to raise sponsorship for the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, after his girlfriend’s father Jeremy Owen Smith from Great Alne, was diagnosed with lung cancer.
Mr Phelps said: “He was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer last year (with no obvious symptoms until it was too late) which has now sadly spread all around the body, including the brain, despite treatment.
“We are now facing the last few weeks with him and I wanted to do something to raise money for specifically, lung cancer research, which led me to The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, this is the only charity in the UK that specialises in lung cancer research despite it being a very common cancer.”
Mr Phelps launched his fundraising efforts on Facebook and within 48 hours he was amazed to discover he’d already raised almost £1,000 from friends and family.
He added: “I was very surprised. I knew I’d get the amount but I didn’t think it would happen so quickly. Alcester’s quite a small community, so people know me quite well. I go to Strong Arms Gym in Alcester and there’s even talk of them possibly sponsoring me.”
The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation heard about Mr Phelps’ success and got in touch to thank him.
Mark Parkinson, challenge and overseas event fundraiser at the charity, said: “We want to thank Bradleigh for his fundraising efforts and for already raising £1,040 in such a short period of time.
“He and his extended family have not only raised money, but also vital awareness of the charity and it is because of people like Brad we are able to fund lung cancer research and support patients and their families such as Jeremy Owen Smith.”
Mr Smith has been just as surprised as Mr Phelps by the fundraising total so far.
“He’s blown away by the whole thing,” said Mr Phelps. “He couldn’t believe how much we’ve raised. Because his condition’s deteriorating quite quickly it seems unlikely he’ll be able to be there for the actual cycle ride, but when I get tired I’ll remember why I’m doing it, and I’ll keep going.”
To sponsor Bradleigh Phelps on his London to Paris cycle ride, visit justgiving.com/Bradleigh-Phelps.