Newcastle’s rugby stars joined forces today as the Falcons and league outfit Thunder officially launched the countdown to the 2015 Children’s Cancer Run.
One of Europe’s biggest family fun runs, the event will take place at Newcastle Racecourse in Gosforth Park on May 17 this year, with the proceeds going to the North of England Children’s Cancer Research.
And at today’s launch at Kingston Park, the home of both clubs, Falcons scrum-half Mike Blair called on the wider community to channel their efforts into backing the worthy cause.
“Hopefully people can get behind it,” he said.
“It’s a charity that’s been growing a lot and for someone like me who has children this is something we have to be very aware of.”
“Hopefully the event will help raise a lot of money and make things a bit easier for the kids and their families who are affected by cancer.”
This year marks the 33rd anniversary of the Children’s Cancer Run, which has raised an eye-watering £6million and organisers are hoping this year’s run can exceed the impressive £165,000 total raised in 2014.
The cancer research primarily takes place at the Sir James Spence Institute and Northern Institute of Cancer Research in Newcastle at the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI).
Blair added: “We have been to the RVI to do Christmas visits and see the children. I realise the importance of charities like this and the best part is the fact that everyone is pulling in the same direction and raising funds for the children’s charity. We want to get as many people as possible to help them.”
The Children’s Cancer Run will be open to all and has different options to cater to all ages and abilities.
There is a five-mile cross country run, a one-mile event for under sevens and a new three-mile run. Entry is £12 or £6 for under sevens.
And Chris Peacock, Chairman of the North of England Children’s Cancer Research Fund, is hoping for a bumper turnout.
“The Cancer Run is such a tremendous family event to be part of, especially for those families who have experienced cancer,” he said. “Every year we’re blown away by the support we all receive.
“When I was diagnosed with cancer, in 1982 at the age of four, I was given just a 30 per cent chance of survival and a child with the same diagnosis today now has an over 80 per cent chance of survival.
“Many of these leaps and bounds have come from research undertaken at the Sir James Spence institute.”
For more information or to book places online go to http://www.childrenscancerrun.co.uk