A variety of entertainment on and off the stage during Crewkerne Relay For Life helped teams on their 24 hour walk around the track in aid of Cancer Research UK. On Saturday afternoon the Kelly Leigh School of Dance gave a ‘fun & funky’ display in the main arena. Artistes on stage included pianist Oscar Fox, Cudos, folk bad Crooked Furrow, the children’s choir from St Bartholomew’s School, guitarist Phil Kelly and Phoenix Brass Band in the main marquee. Saturday evening saw Glam Rock band Snakebyte on stage, whose lead vocalist Laz Michaels completed a lap of the track during the performance.
Candle bags were lit in a special area of the field before the Candle of Hope ceremony with a poem read by Grace, performance by Emily and Lewis of Fields Of Gold, a prayer from the Reverend Stephen Gray of Crewkerne Community Church and a star appearance by recording artist Leanne Jeffers from Leeds. The powerful vocalist sang solo and joined Crewkerne Crewners for You’ll Never Walk Alone, as a solitary star appeared in the overcast late night sky.
An early morning meditation led by holistic therapist Pauline Elsworth in the Red tent, heralded the start of Sunday’s schedule of events which also included guitarist Ellie Hoyle on stage and Phoenix Stars Cheerleaders in the main arena. Crewkerne Community Church offered walkers a chance to revive tired legs with a foot spa. The final countdown, as teams neared the finishing line, was conducted by radio DJ Steve Carpenter, followed by a shower of silver confetti before the relay medals were presented by Becky Trout of Cancer Research UK, Crewkerne mayor Ben Hodgson and volunteer officials.
Sixteen teams: Red Hot Chilli Steppers, Crewkerne Rangers FC, Libertas Wanderers, On A Road To Nowhere, The Holy Walkamolies, Cauldron Clubbers, No One Fights Alone, Your Pace Or Mine, Hinton Hawks, Disney Dynamos, Stoodley Striders, CRUKearners, Crewkerne Running Club, Team Kingcombe, Tods for Trevor and Sky Walkers, took part, raising an incredible amount in excess of £50,000.
Becky Trout, Local Fundraising Manager at Cancer Research UK said: “To raise over £50,000 for Cancer Research is absolutely incredible and best first year for a Relay we have ever had in the South West. I am so proud to have witnessed Louise’s journey in organising this event and would like to say a huge thank you to Louise and her husband Mark Smith in having the bravery to make this event so special. Also a big thank you to the organising committee and all local businesses who have supported and sponsored the event. Money raised by Relay For Life Crewkerne will fund research to beat cancer sooner, helping to ensure that more men, women and children in Somerset and across the UK survive.
“One in two people in the UK will be diagnosed with cancer at some stage in their lives, but the good news is more people are surviving the disease now than ever before. Cancer survival in the UK has doubled since the early 1970s and Cancer Research UK’s work has been at the heart of that progress. However, we have only been able to achieve this thanks to the dedication and commitment of volunteers and supporters like Louise and the Relay For Life committee, without whom we would not be able to fund our life-saving research. We would love to bring the event back to Crewkerne for 2018 and need amazing dedicated people to help us do this.” If you would like to help and join the event committee, please contact Becky Trout on 07766102379 or email becky.trout@cancer.,org.uk