Pretty Muddy: Cancer fundraiser returns to Edinburgh for first time in nearly two years

Edinburgh has hosted its first Pretty Muddy cancer fundraiser event for almost two years.

By Allan Crow
Sunday, 12th September 2021, 12:20 pm

People travelled from across to take part in the 5k obstacle course race at the Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, yesterday.

More than 800 people took part in the Cancer Research UK event raising more than £47,000 for life-saving research.

The money will help scientists find new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer, saving lives as the charity fights back from the impact of the pandemic.

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Nicole Little and best friend Kelsey Robertson took part in the big event.

All mass participation Race for Life events across the UK were cancelled last year because of the pandemic.

This summer saw the return of first big-scale gatherings, but with socially distanced measures to keep participants safe.

Pretty Muddy Edinburgh included a 5K course for adults and a separate event for kids with obstacles including a mud pit, space hoppers and scramble nets.

Among those taking part was courageous 28-year-old cancer survivor Nicole Little and her best friend Kelsey Robertson, 29..

Nicole Little and her best friend Kelsey Robertson.

Nicole, an ambulance dispatcher from Bathgate, was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was just 27.

Her passion to help more people survive the disease is also inspired by her mum Celine Mason who died of breast cancer when she was only 32-years-old, and Nicole was just seven.

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Today, Nicole who carries the faulty BRCA1 gene, known to increase the risk of breast and ovarian cancer, is determined to do all she can to help fund scientists to understand more about the disease and develop better and kinder treatments.

The duo and their team raised almost £1000 taking part in the mud splattered course.

They met at Balbardie Primary School when they were in the same class.

Nicole said: “Taking part in Pretty Muddy has been so much fun. It was very muddy and very wet but we laughed all the way round the course.

“Of course, there’s a serious side to taking part and losing my mum, as well as my own cancer experience, are not far from my mind today. It’s also been emotional to be here among so many others who have also experienced cancer or who are remembering a loved one.

“But Race for Life this autumn feels like a really positive way to take action, to play my part and make a difference to the lives of people with cancer.”

The event organisers issued a heart-felt message of thanks to everyone who took part and donated.

Linda Summerhayes, Race for Life spokeswoman in Scotland, said: “It was particularly wonderful to see Pretty Muddy return to Edinburgh.

“The atmosphere on the day was hugely moving - full of emotion, courage, tears and laughter as people celebrated the lives of those dear to them who have survived cancer and remembered loved ones lost to the disease.

“Now we’re asking everyone who took part to return the money they’ve raised as soon as possible.

“Life saving research is being funded right now thanks to our supporters who fundraise. All 400 mass participation Race for Life events across the UK were cancelled last year to protect the country’s health during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This year, “Funds raised - whether its £10 or £100 will help scientists find new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer, helping save more lives.”

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