Leeds residents and friends Andy Moore, aged 31, and Andy Buclaw, aged 32, set off on an epic fundraising challenge last weekend.
The pair embarked on a 1,026 mile cycle from Land’s End to John O’Groats to raise money for the CLL Support Association (CLLSA) – the only UK charity dedicated to providing education, support, and advocacy to help empower people living with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL).
They started on Sunday and the Leeds residents are determined to cycle from one end of the country to the other in 13 days to support the charity that has helped Andy Moore’s father, John, since his diagnosis of CLL.
Andy Moore explained, “Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia is an incurable blood cancer and the most common form of leukaemia in adults in the UK. When my dad was diagnosed it was an enormous shock for the whole family but the CLLSA has helped him enormously, providing him with an invaluable support network and the advice and information that he’s needed to be able to access the best possible treatment for the disease so that he can live as normal, full and active a life as possible. I’ve never taken on a challenge of this scale before so I’m a little nervous, but also incredibly excited, and I’m determined that we’ll complete it in the 13 days.”
The friends hope to raise over £600 for the charity. Donations can be made at Just Giving
CLL is a cancer of a type of white blood cell called a B lymphocyte which plays a role in the immune system - this makes CLL patients at increased risk of infections and other diseases. CLL cells can accumulate in the bone marrow, blood, and lymph nodes and can cause organ enlargement, tiredness, weight loss, night sweats and fever.
A third of people with CLL go to their doctor feeling unwell – swollen lymph nodes, liver or spleen enlargement, symptoms of anaemia, or bruising; but the majority of people with CLL are diagnosed by chance often from a routine blood test taken for another reason.
Living with a long-term incurable blood cancer presents many people with enormous physical and emotional pressures. Knowing that you will never be cured; the unpredictability of the disease; and fear of disease progression is particularly difficult for patients. As a charity, CLLSA are committed to providing much-needed support to families living with CLL. The patient-led charity hosts frequent regional members meetings, providing a fantastic opportunity to share experiences and offer support to others in a way that only those living with this blood cancer can understand. Charity membership is free to all people living with CLL, their families and friends.