Family raise £3,000 for cancer charity on 24-hour walk

The Middleton family got back on the fundraising trail with their 24-hour relay walk for cancer charity Bloodwise.
The Middleton family got back on the fundraising trail with their 24-hour relay walk for cancer charity Bloodwise.

A Denby family have raised more than £3,000 for a cancer charity after completing a 53-mile relay walk to help others affected by the disease.

Viv, 45, and Graham Middleton, 47, and their four children led their third Red Walk over July 14-15, to raise money for blood cancer research charity Bloodwise.

Viv said: “We were amazed, humbled and in total awe of everyone who joined us over the 24-hours.

“It simply wouldn’t be an event at all without the support of all our wonderful family and friends.”

The event was established following Graham’s diagnosis of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 2010.

Initially Graham’s blood cancer was not advanced enough to require treatment, but by June 2013, he was told he would need six rounds of chemotherapy to keep his cancer under control.

Viv says: “It was difficult for me and the children to see Graham so ill whilst going through treatment and it was an uncertain and challenging time for us all.

“In 2014, we decided we wanted to do something to help others affected by blood cancer and so we organised the first walk.”

She added: “After initially hoping just 20 friends and family would join us, word quickly spread and over 100 people joined us.

“We held the walk again in 2015 and the two walks collectively raised over £10,000 for Bloodwise.”

After taking a break in 2016, the Middleton family decided to bring the event back again this year.

Wearing distinctive red Bloodwise t-shirts, the route took the 140 walkers through numerous towns including Ripley, Alfreton, Chesterfield, Bakewell, Matlock and Belper, collecting donations as they walked.

Viv said: “The sea of red t-shirts was stunning and the laughs and stories along the way were moving.

“We’re very grateful for everyone’s participation, whether they did three miles or the whole distance. There’s already discussion amongst friends and family on who’s doing what next year.”

Bloodwise spokesman Louise Dawson said: “We are incredibly grateful to Viv and Graham and all their friends and family for their continued support.”

“It will help us to fund life-saving research into blood cancers such as leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma.

For information on the charity’s work, visit www.bloodwise.org.uk.