A Rocking Good Night!
Rocker Chris Chittick took a trip back in time to the 70s glam rock era to raise funds for prostate cancer awareness.
His own personal health experience, combined with a love of music, prompted Chris to host his very own music concert - the Head in the Sand rock show, held at the Tractor Shed in Latchingdon.
The line-up of bands included the fantastically-named Sounds Better Naked, Quo’d - a tribute to Status Quo - and Glamstar, who all rocked and shook the shed to its very foundations for a great cause.
Chris said: “When I was first diagnosed with prostate cancer it came as a big surprise as I had no symptoms at all. After talking to my consultant, Mr Lewie, about my options, my reaction was ‘let’s get on with it’ and I had a the whole prostate removed.
“It was during my various operations and treatments that I learnt a lot more about prostate cancer and realised that many men had no idea about the disease. I wanted to get the message out there.
“This is my fifth year of my raising awareness, and I decided I wanted to do something a bit different this time by helping the Broomfield Cancer Care unit which looked after me so well over a six-year period.”
Chris came along to the Macmillan Information Pod at Broomfield this week to meet staff including Lisa Villiers, Macmillan nurse consultant for chemotherapy, to present a cheque for £752.87.
Lisa said: “Thanks to the incredible generosity shown by so many, patients who come to us for chemotherapy treatment are able to access reflexology treatment delivered by our team of complementary therapists, all funded from these donations. This therapy helps to reduce the anxiety associated with cancer treatment and promotes a feeling of relaxation and wellbeing."
Yvonne Carter, charities manager, said: “We are immensely grateful to Chris for his marvellous fundraising efforts on behalf of our cancer care services, and even more delighted that Chris has responded so well to treatment and continues to share his love of rock music.”
Crossing the generations to tackle social stigma and loneliness head on with Maldon Up! project
The Essex town of Maldon dates back more than a thousand years – but in the past year, it has hosted a very modern social experiment.
Researchi tells us that younger and older people are the two groups of society most affected by ageist attitudes and marginalisation. The local NHS wanted to look at a new way of tackling this problem – so they teamed up with organisations caring for both groups.
NHS Mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has been working with Longfield Care Home and All Saints’ Church of England Primary School, both in Maldon, throughout 2018 to bring pupils from the school into the home to spend time with people with dementia.
Philip Brown, Head Teacher of All Saints, explains: “We’re always looking for ways to involve the school in our local community and have been nurturing some early links with three care homes over the past six months. We wanted to give our oldest pupils confidence in building new relationships before they go on to secondary school.
“Staff within the care homes were hopeful that the experience could also help to reduce social isolation and loneliness amongst residents. The visits from our Year 6 pupils have been revolutionary for both age groups.
“We’ve seen some amazing and beautiful friendships unfold over the past few months. It’s been like watching our very own version of the Disney Pixar film ‘Up’.”
This similarity gave the project its name, and the CCG has been so impressed with the early results of the project that it produced a film with Two Cubed Creative to showcase how much young people and home residents have benefited from their meetings. The film is online to watch at https://youtu.be/ObbHWauWg_w.
Longfield Care Home, operated by family company Excel Care, is also delighted with how their residents have responded when the All Saints pupils are with them.
Home Manager Gina Copsey said: “The atmosphere when the children visit is absolutely lovely, but what has surprised me is that, despite having dementia, many of our residents are remembering that the children have been there. They’re talking about it the next day and asking when they’ll be back.”
Dan Doherty, Director of Clinical Transformation at NHS Mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “As in many parts of the country, the NHS here in mid Essex faces significant challenges as our elderly population grows. Projects like Up! offer a potential means of changing the mindset of a generation.
“The Up! project has been made possible through the hard work and commitment of All Saints staff and pupils and the staff and residents of Longfield Care Home. We can support the project through academic evaluation of its positive outcomes. By connecting the school to other local partners we’ve been able to strengthen the project and make sure its outcomes are shared more widely.
“We hope to show that intergenerational projects such as Up! have a profound positive impact on both young and old, helping them to Live Well and changing attitudes towards them in mid Essex and beyond.”
All Saints Church of England Primary School has plans to expand the project and has set up a crowd funding page using ‘The Essex Crowd’ which is a platform offered by Essex County Council to help raise funds from the local community. You can donate by visiting https://www.spacehive.com/maldon_up_project
NHS Mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group is working with Anglia Ruskin University on evaluation of outcomes of the project for the people living with dementia and the school pupils involved.
For further information about the project visit www.midessexccg.nhs.uk Schools and care homes interested in getting involved can contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mr Sri Kadirkamanathan, consultant upper GI surgeon, Nick Alston, trust chairman, Mr Shahab Siddiqi, consultant colorectal surgeon, and Yvonne Carter, charities manager, with Diane and Graham.
Diane and Graham at their fundraising evening.
Fundraising couple twirl their way around the dance floor to raise £1,800 for our robotic surgery appeal
A fundraising couple have twirled their way around the dance floor to raise £1,800 for our robotic surgery appeal.
Diane Whitelaw and Graham Christie held their charity dance at Hamptons Sport and Leisure on August 18.
Guests enjoyed an evening of ballroom, Latin and sequence dancing, plus a raffle.
The couple were inspired to fundraise for the appeal after Graham underwent robotic surgery.
Diane said: “The evening was a great success, more so than we could ever have imagined. Everyone was happy and loved the music and dancing.
“We are grateful to everyone who was involved, including those who attended, contributed donations and offered raffle prizes. Special thanks go to Currys PC World for donating the Amazon Echo which raised £100 in our silent auction.
“We would also like to thank the following local businesses: ASDA (SWF); Boots; Claremont Garden Centre (Maldon); Jems Dance & Party; Majestic Wine; Morrisons (Maldon); Odeon Cinema; Pizza Express, Prezzo; Sainsburys; Secret Garden Tea Rooms; Tesco; Vintage Inns (Fox and Raven, Chelmsford); Waterstones; and Wyvale Garden Centre.
“This was our first attempt at running such an event and we are extremely grateful for the guidance and support received from the Mid Essex Hospitals NHS Trust Charity team.”
Graham’s Story: “Funding the robot is so important”
Graham Christie, 74, from Bicknacre
“In February 2015, I visited Cuba for the third time. It has beautiful beaches, glorious weather, interesting architecture, friendly people...but the food was dreadful! I contracted food poisoning towards the end of my holiday, returning home to discover it was campylobacter, which did not respond to the antibiotics prescribed. I was very lucky that my GP at the Danbury Medical Centre was ‘on the ball’. He acted immediately and within two weeks I'd been given a colonoscopy, CT scan and MRI scan, complete with results. I could not have had better treatment.
“The colonoscopy identified a small cancer in my rectum, in a difficult position to get to. I was fast tracked for surgery and an opportunity arose for the operation to be carried out by Mr Shahab Siddiqi, who suggested robotic surgery.
“At the end of August 2015, I had the operation, which lasted nine hours and included removal of the tumour, repair to a hernia and the fitting of a stoma bag (ileostomy). Fortunately neither chemotherapy nor radiotherapy was required.
“After eight days in Broomfield Hospital, with nurses who went beyond the call of duty in their care of each patient, I was ready to return home and face life with a stoma bag. Rather than feeling sorry for myself, I made a conscious decision to continue with life as normal. It took a while to regain my fitness levels but I was soon dancing again (I teach with my partner Diane), rambling with my local walking group and swimming.
“Nine months after my operation, I took a two and a half hour flight to enjoy a holiday in Sorrento and revisited the following year. I also took my grandchildren and their family to Tenerife in November 2016. A year later, I flew 12 hours to Mauritius and coped extremely well.
“Earlier this year during February/March I was even more adventurous, as Diane and I visited Singapore then went on to Perth, Sydney and Cairns where we experienced white water rafting, amongst other activities. I hope my story will bring inspiration to new ostomates and anyone feeling reluctant to pursue life with the same vigour as before. Don't let it stand in your way.
“Funding the robot is so important.”
‘Our Charity’ is calling on the community to rally together for our £1.5million appeal to fund the upgrading of the robotic surgery service at Broomfield Hospital, including a state-of-the-art new surgical robot and the continued use of surgical robotics.
There is significant evidence that demonstrates a number of advantages for patients who have benefited from surgery with the surgical robot compared to conventional surgical techniques including:
•Shorter hospital stays
•Immediate effects during recovery
•Precision surgery (overcoming limitations of laparoscopic surgery)
Your support will put Broomfield Hospital firmly on the map as surgical innovators in Essex.
You can donate to our appeal, ‘Rally Together for the Robot’, here: https://www.justgiving.com/campaigns/charity/midessexhospitals/surgicalbot
Two friends to cycle 50 miles for the Children’s Burns Club who are “very close to their families’ hearts”
Two friends – who are also next door neighbours - will raise money for the Children’s Burns Club as the group is “very close to their families’ hearts”.
Lucy Gard, 13, and Kristina Harris, 30, from Norwich, will cycle 52 miles from Norwich to Aylsham and back on September 29.
Kristina chose this route after investigating the safest routes within a 25 mile radius of her home, as it features cycle paths all of the way.
Lucy’s mum, Hazel, said: “Lucy is only 13 and cycles to and from school daily and Kristina is accompanying her along the whole route as she is a more experienced cyclist.
“They are preparing for the challenge at every opportunity, cycling after school and at weekends to build up their stamina.”
Lucy said: “We came to know the Children’s Burns Club in 2007 when my brother Tommy was six. He fell in the bath and scalded 37% of his body. He was taken to Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford and that’s where our journey with the Children’s Burns Club began.
“Through family weekends, summer camps, days out and constant support they have allowed Tommy to accept his burns and grow in confidence into the man he is today. They work with young children up to the age of 18 to become proud of their scars and give them the opportunity to spend time with other burns survivors. This allows the children to feel part of a family, they meet new friends and have the chance to partake in adventures they might otherwise have not had the chance to do.
“The support our family was and still is given by the Children’s Burns Club is something completely inspirational and without it I don’t honestly know how we would have got through this time.”
INFORMATION: To support Lucy and Kristina, go to https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/hazel-gard
Prof Selim Cellek, Justine Sullivan, registrar, Marcus Ilg, post-doc, Alice Lapthorn and Prof Peter Dziewulski.
Generous donation of £880,000 from Burns Unit Appeal Fund (BUAF) continues to benefit direct patient care in the East Anglian region
The generous donation of £880,000 from the Peterborough-based Burns Unit Appeal Fund (BUAF) continues to benefit direct patient care in the East Anglian region.
The most recent allocations include funding for Anglia Ruskin University PhD student Alice Lapthorn, who is undertaking a project to use cells grown from burns scars and manipulate them with commonly available medications to modulate burns scars. The St Andrews Centre provides tissue for the research on a regular basis. This work is being carried out under the auspices of the St Andrews Anglia Ruskin (StAAR) Research Unit, a partnership established more than five years ago to forge a close relationship between the St Andrews Centre Surgeons and Anglia Ruskin University. The StAAR research group is being integrated into the new medical school under construction at the Chelmsford campus. The current scar project is being led by Professor Selim Cellek of ARU and Professor Peter Dziewulski from the St Andrews Centre.
Alice said: “Scarring occurs after almost all burn injuries, however there is currently no treatment to prevent their formation. Using the cells isolated from the tissue samples of patients at St Andrews, we will use high-throughput screening to test 1,500 commercially available drugs to see if any can be repurposed to prevent scar formation. By the end of the project we hope to have identified a group of drugs that can be tested further for their anti-scarring properties, with the ultimate aim of one being used clinically in the future.”
In addition, funding has been provided for a clinical research coordinator for Burns and Plastics, Karen Cranmer. The role is continually developing and Karen is currently involved in a number of home-grown burns research projects. The first, ‘Study of Prescribing Patterns and Effectiveness of Ceftolozane-Tazobactam (SPECTRA)’, is a multi-national (across six countries), multi-centre observational, retrospective chart review designed to collect clinical and resource utilisation data on patients who are treated with this antibiotic in a hospital setting. The study will look at clinical outcomes, resource utilisation and outcomes related to practice pattern.
Karen is also involved in the research project for the ‘Assessment of Chronic Pain in Burn Injury’. This study was set up at the St Andrews Centre by Consultant Anaesthetist Dr Patricia Richardson and Anaesthetic Fellow Dr Yvonne Price. The primary objective of the study is to ask: ‘Which patients are living in the community with a healed burn and still require analgesia for pain?’. Data is also collected from patients who do not have pain issues, therefore all suitable adults who have a healed burn less than ten years ago are being asked to complete a ten minute paper questionnaire during an Adult Burns Consultant Clinic. So far, 38 patients have been consented and recruited to this study.
Other projects which the £880,000 fund has been utilised for since it was donated to the St Andrews Centre in April 2015 include improving the outreach service in the Peterborough area – operating out of a base in Ely – to support burns patients. Upgrades have also been made to the day room on the Adult Burns Ward, such as new recliner chairs, plus equipment to measure burn depth; improve patients’ strength and range of movement after injury; assist patients with standing practice; and to help patients regain hand and upper limb function.
The proceeds were garnered via more than three decades of fundraising and investment by the BUAF trustees to improve the lives of burns patients across the East Anglian region.
Professor Dziewulski said: “The benefits of the money for patient care have been seen in different areas, for people from Peterborough and all around the East Anglian region. There has been a direct improvement in access to care facilities for patients and for equipment for patients with burn injuries - it has impacted a broad area of activity. With the remaining money, we intend to buy more equipment, continuing to invest in the assessment and treatment of burns scars and helping to fund further research.”
For more information, please go to https://www.anglia.ac.uk/medical-science/research/drug-discovery-group
Personal trainer to push himself to new limits by rowing a marathon for William Julien Courtauld Birthing Centre in Braintree
A personal trainer will push himself to new limits by rowing a marathon to raise money for the William Julien Courtauld Birthing Centre in Braintree.
Terry Haywood, 56, is preparing to row 42,195 metres on a rowing machine at 1-Life Leisure Centre in Great Dunmow, where he works, on December 15.
His training is well underway in order to ensure that he covers the distance on the machine in under four hours.
He said: “This is not an officially organised event, but something I will independently be doing because I have connections on several fronts with the unit and I know how hard the staff work to provide a great service for expecting mums and their families, and any extra funding they receive will help them to continue to do just that.
“Although I’m not a rowing fanatic, I did previously row a marathon about four years ago and said afterwards that I would never do it again because it was one of the most unpleasant things I had ever done. However, knowing that I will be raising money for a very worthy cause is enough inspiration to override any unpleasantness that it will certainly bring.”
INFORMATION: You can support Terry via his JustGiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/terry-haywood1
Former patient set to rock out to raise money for the Chemotherapy Unit
A former patient is set to rock out to raise money for the Chemotherapy Unit.
Chris Chitticks, 69, from Mayland, has organised a rock tribute concert at the Tractor Shed Theatre, Latchingdon, Essex, on September 15. Doors open at 7pm, and the show starts at 8pm, finishing at approximately midnight.
The concert features Glamstar, a tribute to glam rock, ‘Quo’d: A Tribute to Status Quo’, and ‘Sounds Better Naked’, a tribute to hair rock.
Proceeds will go towards the Chemotherapy Unit at Broomfield Hospital, in thanks for the care Chris received there, and also to Macmillan Cancer Support.
“When I was diagnosed with prostate cancer, at first I was surprised as I had no symptoms at all, and after talking to my consultant, Mr Lewie, and talking about the two options he offered me, my reaction was ‘well let’s get on with it’ and I had a radical prostatectomy (removal of the whole prostate).
“It never crossed my mind that I would not make it through and come out the other end clear of cancer, I believed all would be ok as I felt very well so had no cause to think otherwise, and being a positive thinker I just dealt with it as if nothing was wrong. I think others around me i.e. family were more worried than I was.
“Dealing with recovery was hard going as I had quite a few complications after the main operation, mostly with urethral problems. This took probably the best part of four years to eventually get it all sorted, and resulted in having to have two implants done. I then had to have radiotherapy which was ok, but took seven weeks out of my recovery. Then there was the impact and problems to come to terms with as it does change certain aspects of your normal life, but I accepted that this is how it was going to be and just got on with my life.
“It was during my various operations and other treatment that I learnt a lot about prostate cancer and felt that so many men do not really know anything about it, so as I have been in the music business most of my life, I thought that some sort of awareness event may be a good way to let them know about the dangers of not getting check-ups.
“The treatment that I received from Broomfield and eventually UCLH (University College London Hospitals) made my mind up to put into action my H.I.T.S (Head in the Sand) music event. This is year five of raising awareness, and this year is a bit different as I have decided that as Broomfield Chemotherapy Unit looked after me so well during my treatment over a six year period that I would like to give something back by way of raising some funds for them. I am now over eight years clear and all is well.”
INFORMATION: Tickets for the concert are £10 and can be purchased by calling 07947 069191. You can donate to the Chemotherapy Unit by sending a cheque to Mid Essex Hospitals, MEHT Charities Office, Broomfield Hospital, Chelmsford, Essex, CM1 7ET. You can also text donations by messaging MEHT01 and the amount to 70070.
Jacob Watkin and his family with the Head and Neck team.
Son raises more than £900 for Head and Neck Cancer Service via skydive in thanks for “phenomenal care” of his dad
The son of a patient who underwent surgery for mouth cancer at Broomfield Hospital took part in a skydive to raise money in thanks for his dad’s “phenomenal care”.
Jacob Watkin, 18, jumped from an aeroplane in March one year and one week after his dad, Dwayne’s, life-saving operation was a success. He exceeded his target of £372 by more than double, which he had aimed to raise to represent £1 for “every day his dad has been brave”.
Jacob and his family recently attended the hospital to present the cheque to the Head and Neck team.
This follows his dad Dwayne’s organisation, together with the Head and Neck team, of a fundraising event for the service which was held at Danbury Sports and Social Centre last year, raising more than £7,500.
Dwayne said: “When I found out that I had cancer in my mouth I was terrified. The thought of not knowing what I would be waking up to after the operation was overwhelming as I also have a phobia of needles, which made it worse. On the day of the operation the whole head and neck cancer team were so reassuring that it did ease the apprehension considerably.
“The level of care and attention I received during my time in intensive care and on the ward was outstanding. I can’t thank everyone enough for their diligence, professionalism and compassion, so much so that I wanted to give something back.”
Jacob said: “The team looked after my dad so well following his cancer diagnosis and operation.
“The past year has been challenging for our family. We’ve had our ups and downs and got through it as a unit. In February 2017 my dad was diagnosed with cancer of the mouth, also known as head and neck cancer. Nothing has hit me this hard before but I stayed strong not only for my dad but for my family. Dad’s operation date was March 2, 2017. The day felt like a year waiting for the news on how the operation went. My mum and I tried taking our mind off it by keeping busy and staying productive but nothing really worked.
”The operation was a crazy 12 hours long and when the news came through that it was a success, suddenly nothing else mattered. Although the worst part was over in such a relatively short time, our year of getting through this had only just begun. I want to personally thank the staff, doctors and surgeons at Broomfield Hospital for their phenomenal care, and also every single person who helped us through this incredibly tough time. You all know who you are and this leads me to say you all mean the world to me.”
Grayson Perry and the film crew with the Neonatal team.
Broomfield Hospital’s Neonatal Team to feature in episode of Grayson Perry: Rites of Passage
Broomfield Hospital’s Neonatal Team will feature in an episode of Grayson Perry: Rites of Passage on Thursday (September 6).
Grayson filmed with the Neonatal Team for his exploration of the rituals around birth in our society.
He followed the working life of the team over a two-day period in June, followed by a further visit for a concluding ceremony in August.
The episode will be screened on Channel 4 at 10pm.
Grayson said: “I was entranced by the calm expertise and loving care the staff gave both babies and parents. The NHS is a rare and precious gift.
“The Broomfield Neonatal unit seemed a shining example of how we as a society look after each other.”
Toni Laing, Matron, Neonatal Unit, said: “It was fantastic to welcome Grayson and the film crew to our hospital, where we were able to showcase our work to support families.
“We are very much looking forward to seeing the programme.”