Singer who fought cancer to run Race for Life

Lauren sings Race for Life's praises for battling the killer disease. Picture: Greg Macvean
Lauren sings Race for Life's praises for battling the killer disease. Picture: Greg Macvean
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A CAPITAL singer has spoken of her fight against breast ­cancer as she prepares to tackle a fundraising run to help ­others battle the disease.

Lauren Alari, part of acclaimed Edinburgh band Bleeker, which has supported top Scottish acts such as Eddi Reader, was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2011 
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Lauren with partner Harris. Picture: Greg Macvean

Lauren with partner Harris. Picture: Greg Macvean

Despite requiring intensive treatment, the Portobello woman never missed a gig during six weeks of radiotherapy at Edinburgh’s Western General Hospital.

And now she has spoken about her battle ahead of ­running her third Cancer Research UK Race for Life.

Lauren discovered she had stage one breast cancer when she was referred to the Breast Clinic at the Western General after she noticed dimpled skin under her right breast when she was getting dressed.

“I remember telling myself it will be nothing, I’m fit and healthy and far too young for this.” Lauren said. “I was only 29 when I was diagnosed with breast cancer so it was a real shock.

“I thought this couldn’t affect me but the one thing I clearly remember being told from the doctor who diagnosed me is that cancer doesn’t ­discriminate but early detection is a key factor.”

Lauren is ready to bring her on-stage sparkle for the race around Arthur’s Seat in June, after raising £1900 in the previous two years.

Alongside her, her mother, Pam, 57 and partner Harris’ daughter Robyn, 15 will be ­lacing up their trainers and running the race.

For the 31-year-old, taking part in this year’s Race for Life at South Queensferry on May 4 is a way of trying to prevent others going through the trauma cancer caused for her.

She said: “I love what I do and being able to get up there on stage and sing my heart out gave me something to take my mind off cancer. It got me through the harder days when I thought, I can’t do this, and just wanted to hide away.”

The race will be another milestone for Lauren as she celebrates three cancer-free years.

Lauren said: “On the day of Race for Life last year I found out I was two years free of ­cancer.

“And I can’t wait to tell cancer where to go again at Race for Life this year.”

Susan Johnstone, Cancer Research UK’s Scotland events manager, hoped Lauren’s determination would encourage others to run. “Lauren is an inspiration and we need more go-getting girls in the Lothians to join our formidable army and show cancer who is boss.”