Alan dons walking boots to aid twins

Katie (left) and Emma Sutcliffe.
Katie (left) and Emma Sutcliffe.

A fellow cerebral palsy sufferer is donning his walking boots to help support disabled Lancaster twins Katie and Emma Sutcliffe.

Katie and Emma have spastic diplegic cerebral palsy, and are hoping to raise £85,000 to pay for life-changing surgery in America which could see them walk unaided for the first time.

Backed by the Guardian, the 15-year-olds and their family have already raised more than £65,000 towards their goal.

PhD student Alan Gregory will be taking part in a 4km challenge next week to raise valuable funds for the Twins Appeal.

Alan, a work colleague of the twins’ mum Caroline, also has cerebral palsy, and will be doing the walk with his dad, using his walking frame.

Alan, who is a teaching assistant in the Department of English and Creative Writing at Lancaster University, will undertake the challenge on Thursday, December 27 at 11am at Salt Ayre Leisure Centre.

He said: “As a lifelong sufferer of Cerebral Palsy myself, I am now hoping to contribute to the fundraising efforts by completing the annual Lancaster and Morecambe Athletics Club 4K Christmas Fun Run.

“Please sponsor me to raise funds for the Twins Appeal and give Katie and Emma the opportunity to receive this life-changing treatment.” Caroline said: “I am astounded by Alan’s efforts to support the appeal, and cannot thank him enough for doing this for us.”

If anybody wishes to sponsor Alan – who has already raised £1,150 – they can do so at http://www.justgiving.com/Alan-Gregory4K.

A spoof video of Alan training for the run is also available to watch on You Tube at http://youtu.be/rr1HL6evp-M or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rr1HL6evp-M.

Meanwhile, St Bernadette’s Primary School recently donated £1,000 to the appeal, raised by the schoolchildren at their annual charity sponsored walk.

The family also received a cheque for £250 from St Bernadette’s After School club.

The twins’ mum Caroline said: “I want to say a massive thank you to Mr McKevitt and all the staff, parents and students at St Bernadette’s for their continued support...it’s fantastic what they have done for us!”

The family also want to thank Anthony Barker from Sale Room Services, who donated and auctioned jewellery, raising £329.

Family friends Diane and Gordon Pye held a car boot sale on Sunday for the appeal, which raised more than £100.

Other money has been donated by Carnforth Tesco, who raised £220 from the raffle of a luxury hamper, and Burton-in-Lonsdale Methodist Chapel coffee morning group, who sent the Sutcliffes £100.

Jan Urey raised £500 from the Mud Challenge she undertook at the beginning of December.

Lancaster chartered accountants CLB Coopers are, together with Handelsbanken and HSBC, also fundraising for the appeal.

Tomorrow, Friday, partners/managers and staff at each of the offices are to hold a fancy dress day with a pantomime theme.

Staff will donate a minimum of £2 for the “privilege” and the firm will also be collecting funds by bucket in all public areas.

They are also using other methods to raise funds, including charging a ‘handling fee’ for any staff members having Christmas parcels delivered to the office, collecting donations instead of sending Christmas cards to other staff members, a gift wrapping service, a Pin the Nose on the Reindeer game and a Guess How Many Reindeer Poo in a Jar competition.

Saturday night is the grand draw for the appeal’s Christmas Raffle in the Bowerham Hotel, and tickets are on sale until the draw takes place.

Prizes include a 32ins flat screen TV, a £300 jewellery voucher, a flying lesson and meat hampers.