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News / Overwhelming response

THE ORGANISERS behind Shetland’s third Relay for Life fundraising event said they were overwhelmed by the response they had received so far.

Two years ago hundreds of islanders organised in 84 teams raised a staggering £83,000 for Cancer Research UK, a national record at the time.

Yesterday (Thursday) Olive MacLeod, the chairwoman of the local organising committee, said they already had 75 teams committed for the event that takes place on the weekend of 29 May.

She said the aim was to do better than in 2008 after the Peterhead Relay for Life raised £121,000 for Cancer Research in August last year.

“We have had an absolutely amazing response so far, we have 75 teams so far, and every day there are people who say to me that they will put forward a team. I don’t know how many we will end up with – it is just tremendous,” she said.

The 12 hour event on the Clickimin running track, in Lerwick, will attract well in excess of 1,000 fund raisers, in a community of just 22,000 people.

The overnight relay requires teams of between eight and 15 participants to have at least one team member walking on the track at any one time between 8pm and 8am the following morning.

The Relay for Life has two important elements – the Survivors’ Lap of Honour and the Candle of Hope ceremony.

The survivors’ lap kicks off the relay and is meant as a celebration of all the people who have beaten cancer. Following the start of the relay, all survivors are invited to a party.

The candles of hope will be lit at dusk in memory of loved ones who have died of cancer, but also to celebrate somebody who has survived.

Registration for the event has to be done online at www.cancerresearchuk.org/relay

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Mrs MacLeod said initially there had been fear that the online registration process might cause problems, but that was not the case.

But she reminded team leaders to register via an e-mail they are receiving as this would trigger the process of the fundraising material pack as well as ensure team T-shirts are sent to them by Cancer Research UK.

She said individual teams are in the process of staring to fundraise towards the grant total now, including afternoon teas in the Aith Hall on 4 April.

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