Cancer survivors put best feet forward for march

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IT will culminate in a live fundraiser on national television – but not before a host of inspiring cancer survivors go on the march.

The Capital is one of 15 venues around the UK for the Cancer Research March On Cancer event, taking place on Saturday night.

After leaving Holyrood Park at 7.30pm, the 45-minute walk will take in landmarks including the Scottish Parliament and St Giles’ Cathedral.

Scots who have battled the dreaded disease will share their stories as they march to the beat of live music.

Amongst those taking part will be Carolyn Urquhart, from Comely Bank, who returned to Edinburgh to battle cancer after emigrating with her family to Singapore.

Now fighting fit, the 48-year-old, originally from Corstorphine, will join hundreds of other marchers aiming to raise money for vital research.

She said: “It will be good for my family and me to feel we’re doing something positive.

“It’s going to be a great event in the city for anyone who’s been affected by this awful disease.”

A joint national 
fundraising campaign from Cancer Research UK and Channel 4, Stand Up To Cancer took place for the first time in the United Kingdom in 2012 and raised more than £8 million for ground-breaking research.

Stand Up To Cancer 2014 aims to raise money to get new and better treatments to cancer patients faster. 

The charity event will conclude with a live TV show next Friday, hosted by Davina McCall, below left, comedian Alan Carr and Dr Christian Jessen.

Lisa Adams, Cancer Research UK’s spokeswoman for Scotland, said: “More people are surviving cancer than ever before.

“We have the technology and the knowledge to 
conquer cancer. We just need the funds to turn it into real-life treatments.

“Stand Up To Cancer raises money for translational research – which is often described as ‘bench to 
bedside’ because it takes 
treatments from the lab bench and develops them to help patients being treated in hospital.”

Saturday night’s march costs £5 to enter and the event is open to all ages.

To register, for the charity event go to www.standuptocancer.org.uk/march-on-cancer or simply head along on the night.

‘So many different warning signs’

When Carolyn Urquhart was told the devastating news she had breast cancer, she knew her life was about to change.

Not only would she face a difficult journey through treatment, her diagnosis would mean moving her life and family halfway around the world.

Settled in Singapore with husband Huw Evans, 49, and son Lawrence, nine, the teacher, originally of Corstorphine, loved her job in international schools.

But knowing there was an uphill struggle to come, there was only one place she wanted to be – back home in Edinburgh.

Ms Urquhart, 48, first suspected something might be wrong in September 2012 when she found dimpling on her right breast. Within a day she was sent to a specialist and was told that she had cancer.

She said: “It was a shock. When you think of breast cancer, you think of a lump, but there are so many more warning signs and dimpling is one of them. It’s definitely something more women should be aware of.”

As soon as she was well enough to travel – just days after surgery – she booked a ticket home.

It had been a while since Ms Urquhart had lived permanently in Edinburgh. She had stayed in Zambia, Thailand, Bali and Peru, before settling in Singapore.

Six three-week cycles of chemotherapy and five weeks of radiotherapy at the Western General followed, but Ms Urquhart wasn’t about to lay down to her treatment. She began a new job as a college lecturer while still going through chemo.

Her initial treatment finished in spring 2013, but there was more bad news to come. At her check-up in September last year, a lump was discovered in her left breast and she needed five weeks of additional radiotherapy. Last month, she had her second annual check and so far things are looking good.