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Stars come out to aid cancer appeal

By Somerset Guardian  |  Posted: January 03, 2013

From left, Kara Tointon, Bill Bailey, Pauline Quirke, Vicki Entwistle and Gemma Bissex, and David Mitchell

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Celebrities have been lining up to help people with cancer at Bath's Royal United Hospital.

The Forever Friends Appeal has seen a number of stars lending support to its Cancer Care Campaign, which aims to raise £5 million towards a new £20.5 million cancer centre.

Comedian Bill Bailey is just one of the celebrities who has been pictured supporting the campaign.

More than 40 famous faces have got involved, including John Cleese, Nigel Havers, Kara Tointon, Pauline Quirke, and David Mitchell.

Head of fundraising Tim Hobbs said: "We are enormously grateful to all these well-known faces for taking the time to visit the RUH or lending a hand to support the campaign in some other way.

"We know they are all busy and are therefore delighted when they feel able to respond to a cause that is so close to the hearts of so many.

"Their backing provides us with the opportunity to raise the profile of the RUH Cancer Care campaign as we head into the new year."

Phase one of the campaign was completed in 2012 and involved raising £650,000 for a new gamma CT scanner.

The equipment has been installed in the hospital, and makes it quicker for doctors to diagnose cancer in patients.

Work is now under way to raise enough money to build the new cancer centre at the RUH, bringing all cancer treatment under one roof.

Celebrity support will continue this year, with an as yet unnamed actress launching the Be a Brick/Buy a Brick initiative next month.

The scheme will give individuals and organisations the chance to buy virtual bricks to help build the cancer centre.

Organisations and schools across Bath and north east Somerset are planning to hold fundraising events throughout the next year.

The Bath Half Marathon on Sunday, March 3, will see hundreds of runners pound the city's streets to help raise funds for the campaign, which is the official featured appeal for the race.

Mr Hobbs said: "I would like to take this opportunity to say a heartfelt thank you to all our donors, volunteers and supporters who have supported the campaign since we launched."

For more information about the campaign and events planned for 2013, visit www.forever friendsappeal.co.uk.

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