Change of sport

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A former England cricketer now based in Deeside is organising a fundraising golf day this autumn to raise funds for the cancer charity he credits with helping him overcome leukaemia.

John Edrich MBE, 75, who played a total of 77 test matches for England between 1963 and 1976, was diagnosed with Waldenström’s Leukaemia in 1999 and was given a maximum of seven years to live.

As a cricketer John Edrich, who lives in Ballater, had a reputation as a dogged and fearless batman, and he explained how he met the challenge from cancer with similar determination.

“After five years of chemotherapy, which was extremely debilitating, I was advised to consult Dr Stefan Geider at Camphill Wellbeing Trust in Aberdeen.

“They specialise in mistletoe therapy as part of an integrative approach for patients with cancer. I started with mistletoe therapy in 2005 and have continued with it since. I remain in good health and fully enjoy life.

“There is no doubt in my mind that the mistletoe therapy has helped me and I was very fortunate to have been introduced to this treatment.

“My aim in organising this golf tournament is to help raise funds for medical research into the mistletoe therapy, so that more people can potentially benefit from it in the future.

“Even if people don’t play golf, I hope they can help our fundraising by making a donation, providing sponsorship or putting up a prize.”

John Edrich’s first Mistletoe for Cancer UK Golf Day will take place on Tuesday, September 25 at Ballater Golf Club. The aim is to have 20 teams on the day.

Commenting on the fundraising event, Dr Stefan Geider of Camphill Wellbeing Trust, said: “We are extremely grateful to John Edrich for his initiative in organising this Mistletoe for Cancer UK Golf Day to raise funds.

“It is tremendous that someone like him, who is so well known in sporting circles, is able to use that status to help us to achieve our fundraising goals.

“We have set ourselves the target to raise £100,000. This will fund a medical trial on mistletoe therapy, carried out by Aberdeen University, which will complement another already underway in Bristol University.

“We believe that these trials could have a significant impact on the availability and acceptability of mistletoe treatment for cancer, here in the UK.”

Mistletoe for Cancer UK is an initiative of Camphill Wellbeing Trust, one of seven Camphill Aberdeen City and Shire charities. The trust promotes wellbeing through a programme of research and education. It also provides a growing range of therapies and treatments.

Entry forms can be downloaded from the www.mistletoeforcancer.org.uk (click on the ‘golf’ heading) or by calling Camphill Wellbeing Trust on 01224 869833.