A cancer survivor who works in Brighton and lives in Portslade is encouraging as many people as possible to support a charity swim in a variety of ways.
Richard Carter, 46, a father of two, even posed on the beach near Brighton Marina to show his backing for the event – known as The Swim. It involves a 56-mile swimming relay across the Irish Sea in aid of Cancer Research UK.
Trials are being held in Brighton on Tuesday and Wednesday (26 and 27 July) for two public places in the relay team alongside the likes of Boyzone singer Ronan Keating.
Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson, Gadget Show host Jason Bradbury and TV presenter Jenny Frost are also in the relay team.
And so is Steve Parry, the Olympic swimmer who had testicular cancer diagnosed 18 months ago.
He said: “It was pretty scary at the time but I’m lucky that I was diagnosed at the early stages.
“If I hadn’t checked it out, I may not be here today.
“It was a worrying time for my family but coming from a sporting background I was able to stay focused and took a pragmatic approach dealing with the disease.
“I knew it was treatable and, with the support of my family and doctors, have thankfully have had my first year all clear.”
Making a splash
Mr Carter, who works as a lecturer at City College Brighton and Hove, said that he had bladder cancer diagnosed in 2006.
Having undergone surgery and four months of chemotherapy, he is now well and has just celebrated the milestone five years all clear.
Mr Carter, who is married to Fran and the father of Emma, 7, and Ben, 5, said: “I’m making a splash – and a bit of a fool of myself – to highlight this spectacular fundraising event because I want local people to get involved.
Ways to get involved range from sponsoring one of the swimmers to holding a relay or even tackling a personal challenge in the safety – and warmth – of a local pool.
Mr Carter said: “I feel so lucky to have survived cancer.
“It feels great to have reached my five years all clear.
“It’s thanks to research that I am still here today.
“Success stories like mine would not be possible without the work of Cancer Research UK so I’m delighted to be able to lend my help and am not worried about dressing up like this to help get that important message out.”
Lynn Daly, from Cancer Research UK, said: “Everyone can get involved in The Swim whether you are the next Mark Foster or a complete landlubber.
“If you are a strong swimmer and fancy making waves alongside the celebrity team, visit www.the-swim.co.uk.
“Swimmers who don’t fancy jellyfish, cold water and night swimming in the Irish Sea can still make a difference by raising money through their own personal challenge.
“By pooling the fundraising efforts of the celebrity relay team, local people who support them and those that stage their own activity, we hope to raise an amazing £1 million for Cancer Research UK to help more people in Sussex like Richard beat cancer.”
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