MORE than 100 people get on their bikes to raise money for the Rory the Robot appeal.
The Ride for Rory event took place on Saturday (September 20) and saw NHS staff and residents take on the sponsored 17 mile cycle between Redditch’s Alexandra Hospital and the Worcestershire Royal Hospital, with some also making the return trip.
The amount raised is still to be calculated but could be in the region of £10,000 towards the £1.6million needed to buy a new surgical robot for the Alexandra Hospital, the county’s centre of excellence for urology. About £30,000 has been raised so far.
Among those taking part was Paul Gething and his son Jon who were both injured in a cycling accident about ten weeks ago, resulting in Paul spending time on the trauma ward at the Alex.
He said he took part in the ride to say thank you to the staff whose attention and care meant he was now on the road to making a full recovery.
“This particular cause is close to my heart because it gives me the opportunity to put something back to the hospital.”
The final total will be boosted by 50 per cent of the proceeds from a fun run organised by Redditch Lions around Arrow Valley Lake earlier this month, with residents young and old completing either a 2.5km or 5km course. At least £1,000 has been raised with the other half of the money going to Prostate Cancer UK.
Ian Jukes, managing director of Moons Moat based Praybourne Limited and one of the key organisers of the Ride for Rory, said he hoped next year’s event would be bigger and better: “The money is still coming in but I hope we will have raised a significant amount.”
Dr Adel Makar, lead cancer clinician for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, added: “The people of Worcestershire are strongly behind our desire to have a surgical robot in the county. They turned out in force to raise money for Rory and I would like to thank them all for taking part.”
Prostate cancer claims the life of one man every hour and by 2030 will be the most common cancer. In Worcestershire alone there are 2,500 men surviving prostate cancer at any one time, with about 450 to 550 new prostate cancer cases diagnosed every year.
Rory the Robot will allow surgeons to remove tumours with more precision through five cuts around the prostate gland rather than open surgery.
It means less blood loss, less pain after surgery, a lower risk of complications and recovery times will fall from up to 12 weeks to between three to four weeks.
To donate visit www.justgiving.com/rorytherobot or text RORY97 + £amount to 70070.
Riders start the challenge 3914014ABR7.
Below: Redditch Mayor Pat Witherspoon talks to riders before the race. Pictures by Alex Bradbury 3914014ABR3