Top ten club fundraiser
The Top Ten Club fundraiser

Week 78 has seen 64.74 miles walked, 9.25 miles run, 40.38 miles cycled, 250metres swum and 2.5 miles rowed, skied, biked and run in the gym totalling 117.12 miles covered under my own steam while ascending 6.603.31 feet. As well as 36 press-ups, 96 sit-ups while moving 5kg over 144 metres or 720kgs over 1 metre It has also seen another step forward towards a certain future, a significant milestone crossed, a wary moment on a train and a most wonderful lunch.

The week started with mounting frustration at the slow pace at which my left hand was healing after my fall from the bike 5 weeks ago. I had been offered a limited sponsorship by the Dalmahoy Golf and Country Club in Edinburgh in order to enable further development of my plan to protect myself against any regress of my brain tumour. I am utterly convinced that I am healed but only a fool would fail to listen to the advice of the experts. My wonderful oncology team are so very pleased with the way that I have responded to treatment and by the way that I fought to reinforce the treatment through my 5Fs strategy of Faith, Food, Physical Training, Family and Friends and the Focus of the challenge. While it would appear that we have managed to make the impossible possible, experience tells them that I must not rest on laurels, that I must not stop doing what I am doing and in fact should focus on retraining the brain to make sure that I have beaten the beast if it does try to come back. If it does come back it will come back hard as it is now a much higher grade (more aggressive) tumour than it was when it first started growing. It will try and degrade my cognitive (ability to think) and motor (ability to act) functions managed in the diseased right side of the brain. But losing my inner ear and subsequently training the brain to take on the balance function taught me that the brain can be retrained, but you have to design a training programme that focuses on what you want to achieve, that is hugely repetitive in nature in order to force the brain to find a way to function, and that is delivered over a significant period of time. The brain is incredibly adaptable but it does take time. Dalmahoy offers much in support to the 5 Fs and retraining plan. It is a 15 mile bike ride along the wonderful disused railways before joining with the Grand Union Canal to take me on out to Ratho to drop down into Dalmahoy. It has the organ in St Mary’s Episcopal Church which they have offered to let me play. It has the glorious countryside around the Country Club and the Pentland Hills nestled just behind the club as well as the gym and swimming pool for further Physical Training. It has a golf professional who has so very kindly offered to give me a couple of lessons and practice time on the club’s facilities to get me started in trying to train the brain. It has quiet corners around the old house in which I can continue to try and teach myself to juggle to train the brain. It also has a couple of quiet areas in which I can sit with my laptop and veggie pick and mix bag and maybe even the occasional mocha in order to sit and write short posts to keep you updated on my progress. In fact with the very friendly team that run the hotel it has all that I could possibly need to try and ensure that this beast is beaten for good. Who knows, maybe in five years I might be able to get good enough to get a handicap. In fact a dear friend shared a pot of tea with me the other day and encouraged me further as we discussed the possibilities. ‘You know what Archie, I think you can go better than a handicap. I have a wonderful vision of you competing for the GB golf team in the Paralympics. Work hard and who knows what you might achieve!’ I smiled and considered what he said. While such a vision would seem most unlikely, especially if you had witnessed my rather poor efforts at the wonderful Brucefields Family and Golf Centre in Stirling, we have already made the impossible possible once by shrinking the tumour that could not be shrunk, to such a size that the official report states, ‘Nothing to Measure!’ And now, as I feel my brain slowly emerging, day by day from the fog of brain surgery, radiotherapy and 12 months of chemotherapy, as I get steadily stronger and cognitively more capable, who knows what we might be able to achieve? Certainly I am prepared to work hard to do the very best that I can, to make the very most of the time that I have been so wonderfully given, in order to provide inspiration, encouragement and hope. If I could use this next five years and the opportunities given to me to make another seemingly impossible challenge possible then I can provide inspiration, encouragement and hope to so many more people.

But first I had to get to Dalmahoy. I could take the two buses but there was no physical benefit to such a move and as I nursed my still aching and twinging hand and thought of the possibilities I realised that I could of course walk the 15 miles as an initial reconnaissance of the cycle route. I had already been for a two mile walk that morning but the sun was shining so I grabbed the Spokes cycle map of Edinburgh and started to plan a route. I made two veggie pick and mix bags with the daily dose of raw tenderstem broccoli, cherry tomatoes, red grapes, carrot and brazil nuts and made two egg mayonnaise sandwiches with spinach, rocket and watercress salad and called Allie to encourage her to join me in my barking plan. She had been on a 5 mile run that morning so was a little reticent but agreed. So we walked it in bright sunshine and made the entire 15 miles ascending 1228.67 feet in 4.5 hours while trying to memorise the trickier parts of the route, because next time I was going to try and tackle it by bike. We got the busses back and tucked into a great pasta marinara on return. A great and encouraging day.

On Tuesday I was back in Bridge of Allan as my daughter Heather was dancing in the Forth Valley Schools Dance Competition. I got on the train at Edinburgh and as the train pulled away bound for Stirling a man behind and across from me started to ask me questions. Being to my rear and right he was out of sight and out of hearing so I didn’t immediately identify that this man was talking to me. I was sat at a table pulling out my laptop and mouse in order to start answering some emails that were stacking rapidly. I heard a noise but just assumed it to be the normal chit chatter and small talk of a busy train. But the noise became clearer and angrier and to my horror I suddenly realised that this noise was talking to me. I turned towards the noise and was immediately fixed by the gaze of a man whose face was disfigured. His eyes were sad but angry. Very angry and determined. He asked me again and very aggressively, ‘where are you going? I said!’ He didn’t shout but with the delayed, deliberate and sometimes clumsy speech of a man with learning difficulties and perhaps anger issues he was speaking in a clear and a deliberate tone brimming with anger. Immediately I sensed the tension in the carriage as this man fixed my gaze and normally I answer all questions openly and honestly but today I just felt the need to clam up and guard myself. I was planning to travel on past Bridge of Allan to Dunblane to buy a cheap pair of wellies from Mr Hunter’s shop and could have told him that but clammed up so replied, ‘Oh nowhere.’ ‘Yes you are’, retorted the man. ‘You have to ee going somewhere.’ ‘You’re haaing an affair!’ he retorted with accusation in his voice and as he slurred his words my suspicions grew that he had been drinking and that he had obviously been watching me wave goodbye to Allie from the train as I pulled away from Edinburgh. I realised two things. Firstly that I had to keep my head, keep calm and not raise the tension further than it already was, and secondly that I had to protect my identity from this potentially troublesome individual. I turned, looked at him and in order to politely end the conversation said simply, ‘please excuse me but I have to do some work.’ ‘What do ya do?’ asked the man. For the first time ever I knew that this was not the time, the place, or the man to tell about my disease and my challenge to beat it. So instead I kept it simple. ‘I’m a fundraiser’ I replied. ‘Who da ya funraze for?’ he asked. So I rolled out the 5 charities and when I hit the Princes’ Trust he offered his hand in an aggressive yet unsteady manner. ‘Tak ma han.’ I shook his hand. ‘Yurrr a goo man’ he continued. ‘I ha don twee courses wif the princesssss twust. I did sa much wiv em. I went rope climbin and canooin an cavin an all sorts.’ ‘Great I said, so what do you do now?’ ‘Nofin’ came the reply with a drunken shrug, and then he hauled himself up from his seat, wobbled unsteadily the short distance from his seat across and behind me to lurch and collapse into the seat opposite me on the table. I moved my computer across the table towards the window out of harm’s way and moved myself back up towards the aisle, across from him and towards the escape route if I needed it. He pulled out a bottle of Buckfast wine, a lethally strong but lethally cheap tonic wine made by Buckfast Abbey and a wine so often associated with drunken violence. Then he slurred the obvious. ‘I ee dwinking……….So how much yer waised?’ He asked. I was keen to finish the conversation and move on but rather decline an answer completely I decided to give him an answer that would hopefully end the conversation politely, allowing me to get on with some work so that he got bored and went back to his seat. ‘Unfortunately I am not at liberty to reveal that information. I started to try and make up a plausible conversation stopper, ‘Due to client confidentiality I am not at liberty to disclose that information but you can access the information if you were to go to the accounts pages of the 5 charities for whom I work.’ I was quietly pleased with my presence of mind but it was not enough. ‘Na. Howwww mucccch have ya waised, hundweds, fousands, minnions?’ he pressed as spittle flew across the table and he frothed around the corner of his mouth. Again I stuck to my guns about client confidentiality and added that it would be wrong of me to sit here and brag about how much money I had raised, but he pressed again and again and I was failing to move him on when he said, ‘ya know somfin. You shouldnae be sat at computer tapping away an doing nofin. You should be on the course going threw it wif em,’ his finger waving out towards the window as he struggled to sit upright in front of me. I explained that my job as a fundraiser was one of communication so needed to be sat at a desk with a phone communicating with the outside world in order to raise as much money as I could in order to give the opportunity for a new life to as many people as I could.’

He had a point but of course I had been there and done it. Not all of it of course, in many ways, in my early years I had had a blessed life, but in the last 3 years I had lived and breathed some of the true horrors of real life and was determined to make life better for so many others through my example, but this man was not in the mood for listening, so I kept my head and said simply, ‘I have to communicate to fundraise for the benefit of others.’ ‘How much ya get out of it?’ he asked and I decided to stick to the truth as my safest bet, ‘nothing’ I replied. ‘I am lucky that I can do this work voluntarily as I have a half pension having recently retired from the Army.’ I decided to leave out the War Disablement pension as that would cause further unwelcome questions and it wasn’t huge sums of money. Enough to keep me warm, fed and clothed and even the occasional trip to the theatre with the children and wasn’t relevant to this conversation. Besides, when I mentioned the Army the tension rose further. He locked my eyes with his again and as he did so I slowly closed my computer and packed it away out of arms reach. I could sense the anger bubbling within him but could not understand why. The carriage was silent. He was silent. He just fixed me with his angry inquisitive gaze as I quietly packed away my mouse and computer into my daysack while ensuring that the straps were not tangled around my legs under the table. I pushed it gently across to the far side under the window under the table with my feet and got ready for action. I had no idea what was going to happen next. Still I held his gaze and once sure I was unhindered and ready to defend myself I sat up with my hands on the table. ‘Who ya wif?’ He asked. Again I stuck to the truth, not that it mattered as my answer was lost in an announcement on the train, ‘The King’s Own Scottish Borderers and then after amalgamation the Royal Regiment of Scotland, ‘ He nodded then fixed me with his gaze and stated, ‘I waz in the special forces,’ I felt for his need to hang on to such a fantasy in order to justify himself to himself and to others. I wanted to implore him to find self-esteem in a job, not in a fantasy and a bottle, but clearly he was not in the mood for such a direct approach. Instead I went for the sceptical approach. So in a voice full of boyish enthusiasm I fired a barrage of questions, ‘Gosh, so what unit did you join from, what cap badge were you with originally, what squadron did you serve with, where did you serve?’ He looked at me with fear in his face and his eyes wandered around the coach. Quietly and gently I said, with what felt like every ear in the coach straining to hear, ‘you weren’t in the special forces were you. Please do not do them a disservice by pretending to be.’ Quick as a flash the anger returned and he stood in his seat glowering at me, my eyes once again fixed by his as he fidgeted where he stood. He picked up the almost empty bottle of buckfast wine and just as I started to stand to defend myself the doors on the train beeped and opened. We had come to a stop at Falkirk Grahamston. ‘Go F*** YERSEL YER FING C***’ he exclaimed before sweeping past me and sweeping his hand angrily across the table as if to knock my computer flying, that was, of course no longer there. He leapt out of the doors and stormed angrily up the steps and away. I watched him like a hawk as did half the coach. As the doors beeped and closed I sat in relief, shaking from the adrenaline of the moment slightly, and the coach erupted into spontaneous applause with several passengers giving me a thumbs up with huge grins as if to say ‘well done’ as relief swept across this coach of busy commuters. Perhaps I should have introduced the challenge to these passengers but I didn’t. Instead I followed the man with my eyes as we pulled away. I was relieved but also sad. Sad that I had let this man walk away still angry, still bitter and no better for our meeting. Perhaps I had failed this man. Certainly I am sure that I could have handled him better, but I was so very thankful that it finished without a need to defend myself and that I had managed to keep my head when he was losing his.

The Dance Competition was an exciting evening in which there were some wonderful dances. The standard had matured considerably over previous years and provided for much entertainment, light relief after the troublesome train journey, and significant inspiration. Heather’s school, Dunblane High, started strongly but with no Heather, until she strode on confidently in a short solo before joining the rest of the troop. The whole dance seemed to just surge forward and consume her to within their ranks. It was a genius bit of choreography which Heather and the girls all danced seamlessly. I was thrilled to have been there to witness it. But then I was inspired further by the dance by Larbert High School who danced so very cleverly to a song which consisted of strong, motivational words spoken to music. During this dance in which the girls danced around the stage with phrases tattooed on their arm such as:

I was abused
I was assaulted
I was bullied
I was depressed
I was anxious
I was addicted
I was suicidal
I was self-harming

The Raffle
The Top Ten Club Raffle

I was becoming increasingly motivated towards my future. I sat in the dark of the auditorium, breathless from the images of pain and anguish danced so effectively, with such passion, emotion and maturity, tears welling in my eyes as I realised how much this dance reflected some of the more difficult moments in the 18 months of severe brain-focused treatment which led me so perilously close to depression, anxiety, and even at one stage, early in the journey, just giving in and ending it all.
But as the song crescendoed towards the climax of the dance so these girls rose from the ashes of their past and flew forward into a new life. Here, at this moment, I was reminded that there are so many different types of beasts beyond traditional disease that inflict us in society. Yet my 5 Fs strategy developed to help me beat my beast of a disease also helped me straddle the pitfalls of mental illness brought on by such an intense period of treatment and the spectre of a certain death. Twice I heard from well-meaning individuals, ‘well I could get run over by a bus tomorrow.’ True. None of us know what is round the corner, but if you had been told that at some point, at any point from now within the next 3 years you WILL be run over, that is quite a different warning and one that would most likely lead you to remaining in the house and as far away from traffic or any sort of motor vehicle as possible. You will struggle to live any form of life without fear of imminent death. You may indeed become, understandably so, anxious and depressed. When the world leading expert from the United States came back and said that I had at best 3 years, in consultation with my oncology team it became clear that he used the phrase ‘at best’ for a very good reason. The expectation was not that I would fail to wake up one morning. Instead that slowly but surely, over time, the brain tumour would start to slowly but surely degrade my cognitive and motor function until I was unable to look after myself in any way until eventually switching me off completely. That was why I was implored to sort out my end of life plan so quickly, while I still had the cognitive capacity to do so and that was why I had to have that rather unsettling tour around the wonderful Erskine hospital in Gilmerton Edinburgh, in which my future, in which I could no longer feed myself, clean myself or go to the loo without assistance, or even hold a sensible conversation, 30 years younger than the currently youngest resident, was a unnerving dose of reality which saw Allie and I blubbing in her car.
But I have beaten the beast of a brain tumour and the spectre of mental illness and these girls were reminding me, as the visual of the dance and the audio of the music washed over me in the darkness, just how wonderful it was. That I now have a future and that I could use that future to provide inspiration, encouragement and hope to all those that face the spectre of mental illness or physical disease through the example of my journey. I have looked hard for the words and music to which the dance was set but sadly was unable to find it. But what I did find was the Desiderata by Max Ehrmann.

Not My First Autograph - Kerry Keeping Me Right
This was really not my first Autograph – Kerry was keeping me right

‘Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexatious to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.’

You know what? I couldn’t agree more and then just to reinforce the message about my role in giving hope for a new and better future to others through my example, I attended my quarterly meeting for the board of the Beat the Beast Challenge Unincorporated Charitable Association, in which I learned that I had now raised a total of £12,130 which means that I have been able to donate £2,426 to each of the 5 charities of the British Red Cross, Cancer Research UK, Help for Heroes, The Princes’ Trust and the World Wide Fund for Nature over the course of the challenge and so helping to improve the lives and life chances of so many more people and I was thrilled to learn of such news.

It was then time to test my memory and my left hand. I had packed my maps away in the panniers having done a quick map check before I went and was going to go as far as I could without having to reference the map. Could I go the whole way just off memory which would have been impossible 2 years ago? I was to cycle the 15 miles to Dalmahoy that I had walked with Allie a few days before. The sun was out but the wind was gusting at well over 20 knots. That made the going particularly difficult and saw the 15 miles that I had hoped to be completed in 1 and a half hours completed in one and a half hard hours of cycling, but with the exception of one wrong turn I managed the entire route without reference to the map, relying entirely on memory. So as I cycled in to Dalmahoy dripping after a passing shower I was thrilled with the way that I managed the test of memory. As I waited to speak with my point of contact for the limited sponsorship at Dalmahoy, I dried nicely and as I did I remembered the amusing thoughts about me getting to the Paralympics as a golfer and I also remembered the last line of Desiderata. ‘And whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.’ I smiled and after a really good and positive meeting in which I affirmed my intensions to take up the hotel’s very kind offer in mid-June, once the hand is fully fit, I retired for my packed lunch with a veggie pick and mix bag supplemented by a Mocha from the hotel before heading out for the 15 miles back. But hopefully this time with the wind behind me. It was! And an hour five minutes later, I was back home. A great day.

Then to reinforce the message further, to keep doing what I’m doing, to never, ever give up, I attended the Beat the Beast Challenge fundraiser organised by Morag and the Top Ten Club. I wasn’t sure what to expect and was blown away by what I found. Allie and I were embraced and welcomed so warmly by all. Delicious soups were made and racks of sandwiches prepared and as well as craft stands and games for the children. The Rural Hall was full to the gunnels with the village sat around tables of 4 having lunch together with the exception of one table. Once we had done a short orientation around the hall saying hello to as many as we could Kelly ushered us to a table with some soup and then a tray of sandwiches followed by tea for me and coffee for Allie. We were being looked after so jolly well and the happy chatter of the village consumed the hall and filled my head as the girls of the top ten club, Isla, Marley, Tilly, Jeanette, Nianh, Skye, Grace, Beth and Hannah all worked the room tirelessly selling raffle tickets for the prizes that had filled an entire table. I was asked to say a few words and started by thanking Morag and her amazing team of Gillian, Alison, Kerry, Helen and Pam for all their hard work and support, then I thanked the girls again for all their hard work selling raffle tickets, and then I started on the challenge and where I was at. I so enjoyed letting the village know the exciting news of the tumour all but disappearing until there was ‘Nothing left to Measure,’ but how I had to keep doing what I was doing over the next five years to stop the beast from ever coming back, and that if I could make it to the five year point then the NHS could then officially sign me off as healed. I so enjoyed telling them of my plans to use those five years do the very best I could for all the people that I could for as long as ever I could by sharing my story and encouraging others to follow my example to beat, for those that need to, their own beasts, or even better prevent any beasts from cropping up in the first place. I enjoyed

The Top Ten club fundraiser in full swing
The Top Ten Club fundraiser in full swing

telling of my nearly 3,000 miles covered under my own steam, of the 113,680 feet climbed in the process, of the nearly 700 people met with hands shaken on the journey and of the over £12,000 raised so far, every single penny of which was going directly to the charities thanks to the generosity of Webb and Wallace Accountants in Doune, Key Facilities Management in Doune, the Kingdom Bank in Nottingham and many, many others. But most wonderfully I was able to stand up and say that I have a future, quite possibly a long and rosy future ahead of me thanks to my incredible, though arduous 18 months of treatment to beat the beast reinforced by my 5 Fs Strategy to beat the beast. As I stood on the stage and looked across at the village all sat at their tables so very happy for my news I listed my 5 Fs. The strategy of faith, a strong faith and belief that I could be healed; of Food including 8 to 10 portions of fruit and vegetables a day including lots and lots of tenderstem broccoli, carrots, red grapes, cherry tomatoes, brazil nuts and a Turmeric Supplement; of Physical Training, that does sound like an F, taken 2 to 3 times a day; of having a focus in the form of the challenge giving me a reason to get that mattress off my back and get out there to take on the challenge; and finally of Family and Friends, ‘of which I include you all here sat in this hall, who have supported me so generously with time and treasure.’ As I said this I spread out my arms and swept them across in front of me to indicate that I was actually meaning each and every person in this hall. And as I did I looked across the room and saw them seated with tears in their eyes and smiles on their faces and my daughter sat looking up at me the same. A tear in her eye and a smile on her face. This was a wonderful moment that saw my voice crack. I laughed nervously and apologised for the overt display of emotion but it had suddenly dawned on me that I had a future and I had a chance to offer a future, a happy, healthy and successful future, to those that want it, to those that need it and even to Heather and the girls who were sat watching so kindly and gently as I fought to get a grip of myself. I was able to announce that we had managed to raise at least a further £300 this lunch time and thanked them all for their generosity before ending to a round of applause. I helped clear up before then heading back to the flat to count the money. A whopping £480.70 was raised before I was later handed another £31.20 from the library’s efforts for the challenge which took the total raised to a wonderful £511.90

To top off a week of encouragement and reflection designed, I think, to strengthen my resolve to help others to beat their own beasts through the provision of inspiration, encouragement and perhaps most importantly hope, I received further encouragement in St Modoc’s at the morning communion service. Alison’s brilliant sermon told of the wonderful story of Jesus’ healing and how, through such acts, out of despair comes hope. Perhaps my healing, the making of the impossible, possible, will be just that, a beacon of hope for all those that need it. All those that face impossible odds or hurdles that appear to be just too big to tackle. I very much hope so and ask all those that might know of somebody who needs a little inspiration, encouragement or even just hope, to point me out to that person so that they might find it in my journey if they want to.

The Wonderful Team That Made The Top Ten Club Fundraising Event All Happen!
The Wonderful Team That Made The Top Ten Club Fundraising Event All Happen!

Meanwhile the challenge in numbers since the start on 20th August 2015

Years spent Beating the Beast: 1.66
Months spent Beating the Beast: 20
Weeks spent Beating the Beast: 78
Days of official challenge activity completed: 184
Total Miles Cycled: 1178.07
Total Miles Walked: 1287.61
Total Miles Run: 227.59
Total Miles Paddled: 7
Total Distance Cycled, Skied, Run and Rowed in the gym: 102.13 miles
Total Distance Swum: 5,620 metres
Total Miles covered under own steam: 2,808
Total Height Gained under own steam: 120,284.15 feet
Mountains Climbed: 8
Hills Climbed: 36
Days of Voluntary Activity: 12.5
Organ tunes learnt and performed: 5
Salmon Caught: 0!
Bats Found:4!
Curling Matches played in: 8
Curling stones placed on the button (the centre of the target): 3
Weight Training Sessions: 43
Weight shifted: 10kgs lifted over 3,930 metres or 38,680kgs moved over a metre,
Aerobic Circuit Sessions: 16
Press Ups: 2,102
Pull Ups: 90
Sit Ups: 5,083
People Met and Hands Shaken: 649
Pots of tea shared: 43
Prayers joined on the top of a hill: 3
Prayers joined in the street!: 5
Prayers joined in a Train Station: 1
Prayers joined in a Café: 3
Pills popped: 1,589
Days until Driving Licence (lost to epilepsy) possibly Returned: 727
And most importantly – Money Raised as at Week 78 – £12,641.90

Considering I started this challenge 19 months ago very quietly with no target beyond a fiver, thanks to the brilliant advice from a friend of mine, I am absolutely thrilled and again thank you all. That is £68.70 for each and every day that I have managed to find the will and energy to take on an activity designed to help me Beat the Beast and my goodness it has been worth it for my peace of mind, for my healing and for the five wonderful charities you are supporting through your generosity. Long may it continue. May I also ask again however that if you are not sponsoring me to please consider it for as much or as little as you can afford.

Thank you all for your incredible comments and support. Please continue to spread the word.
If you see me around do please give a cheery hello and shake my hand or give me a cheery wave to show your support and encourage me on.

Thank you
Yours aye

Deo Juvante

We can all Beat our Beasts!

Thank you for joining me on my own personal journey and encouraging me to walk, cycle, climb, paddle, sport and do good deeds each day to ‘Beat the Beast’ while helping to improve the lives and life chances of so many more people through sponsorship.

The Five Charities that I have selected to support are:

  1. Cancer Research UK – My Father Succumbed to Lung Cancer; a couple of friends are currently fighting cancer and I am fighting a brain tumour. Let’s Help to Beat Cancer Sooner.
  2. The Prince’s Trust – Inspiring and preparing disadvantaged Young Lives for success.
  3. British Red Cross – helping those in need around the UK and the world whoever and wherever they are.
  4. World Wide Fund for Nature – For a Living Planet and a Future Where People and Nature Thrive.
  5. Help for Heroes – Support for our Wounded and their Families.

To learn more about my story that brought me to this point, how I plan to ‘Beat the Beast’, what activities I plan to do within the challenge and why, please see my welcome video.

How to Sponsor Me

The Top Ten Raffle
The Top Ten Raffle

The Beat the Beast Challenge is self-funding through my own contribution while keeping costs to a minimum with voluntary support and corporate sponsorship in kind. Therefore the entirety of every penny donated goes directly to the 5 challenge charities.
Please sponsor me by completing a standing order form either through your own personal internet banking or by completing a hard copy standing order form, found on my website, or a blank standing order form available in your branch of your bank and then handing it in to the teller or posting it to your bank at the address found in your cheque book.

The Beat the Beast Challenge Account details needed for the standing order form are as follows:
Payee: 1001-02414-8 Beat The Beast Challenge (It is essential that the entire payee reference of: 1001-02414-8 Beat The Beast Challenge is included in order to ensure that your sponsorship gets to the Beat the Beast challenge account)
Sort Code: 20-63-25
Account Number: 03278786

Remembering that I will complete 20 days of activity each month, suggested but not
exclusive sponsorship options, are as follows:
£1.00 per day = £20.00 per month.
£0.50p per day = £10.00 per month.
£0.25p per day = £5.00 per month.
£0.05p per day = £1.00 per month.
It is entirely up to you how much you would like to and are able to sponsor me for so do please give as much or as little as you can. Every penny will be very gratefully received.

To Sponsor Me from an account outside of the UK the following details will be needed by your bank for a standing order:
Payee: 1001-02414-8 Beat The Beast Challenge (It is essential that the entire payee reference of: 1001-02414-8 Beat The Beast Challenge is included in order to ensure that your sponsorship gets to the Beat the Beast challenge account)
Sort Code: 20-63-25
Account Number: 03278786
Swift Code: BARCGB22
IBAN: GB87 BARC 2063 2503 2787 86.

While I hope you will encourage me to keep going by sponsoring me for every day I survive and am able to find the cognitive and physical capability to complete a day’s task designed to improve my chances of ‘Beating the Beast’ or improving the lives of others, 5 days a week, four weeks a month, for as long as ever I can any One off Cash contributions will be most gratefully received and distributed in exactly the same manner to the five charities as the sponsorship.

Any one off donations can be made by BACS or cheque sent to the following account:
Payee: 1001-02414-8 Beat The Beast Challenge (It is essential that the entire payee reference of: 1001-02414-8 Beat The Beast Challenge is included in order to ensure that your sponsorship gets to the Beat the Beast challenge account)
Sort Code: 20-63-25
Account Number: 03278786

Kingdom Bank Limited
Ruddington Fields Business Park
Mere Way
NG11 6JS

To complete a BACS donation from an account outside the UK the following details will be required by your bank:
Payee: 1001-02414-8 Beat The Beast Challenge (It is essential that the entire payee reference of: 1001-02414-8 Beat The Beast Challenge is included in order to ensure that your sponsorship gets to the Beat the Beast challenge account)
Sort Code: 20-63-25
Account Number: 03278786
Swift Code: BARCGB22
IBAN: GB87 BARC 2063 2503 2787 86.

NOTE: If you need to contact Kingdom Bank Ltd you can do so on 0115 921 7250.

Thank you for having enough faith in me to sponsor me.
Yours aye