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Start 2015 by taking up a challenge

Why not start 2015 by taking up a challenge and making a real difference at the Royal United Hospital?

The Forever Friends Appeal runs various different events throughout the year, as well as promoting events run by others. Whichever you choose, by raising sponsorship you will be helping the hospital.

Just browse our events section where you will find running, walking, challenge, cycling and community events – there is something for everyone!

Here is a small taster of some events that are coming up soon – click on an image to visit the event.

Bath Half Poster  Fire-walk  Walk of life

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Christmas Raffle has a winner

The Forever Friends Appeal is very excited to announce the winner for their annual Christmas Draw 2014. A Brand New 2014 Kia Picanto was the star prize for the draw to help encourage the general public to purchase tickets and raise funds for their RUH Cancer Care Campaign.

Mr Hywell Thomas of Bath had a rather big surprise when contacted by The Forever Friends Appeal to announce he was the winner of the brand new car which had been kindly provided by local dealership, Allen Kia Bath.

As a supporter of the Royal United Hospital, Mr Hywell had received 2 books of tickets from The Forever Friends Appeal as part of their annual raffle mailing.

Mr Hywell says: “I intended to take the 2 books of tickets to a club I attend and sale them, but I forgot and with time running out before the draw I just purchased the books myself not expecting to win. I always try to support the Hospital, but was shocked when I received a phone call to say I was the lucky winner of such a great prize.”

Mr Hywell continues “As I do not drive, the car is something of an early Christmas present for my wife”

Richard Gyde, Finance Officer, The Forever Friends Appeal says “We would like to congratulate Mr and Mrs Hywell on winning the car, but also wish to thank the generosity of Allen Kia for providing such a fantastic 1st prize again for this years raffle, and the many other supporters who generiously donated some great prizes. Each year we continue to be amazed by the generosity of every person who purchases our raffle tickets and our dedicated volunteers who help sell them day in, day out for 4 weeks.”

Mr Gyde continues “Tickets were bought by patients, visitors, staff at the RUH, together with the loyal supporters of The Forever Friends Appeal, customers of Allen Kia Bath and members of the public raising just under £20,000 with the proceeds going towards building an exceptional new Cancer Centre at the RUH. Supporters who didn’t get the chance to take part in the raffle can still help make a real difference at the RUH by taking part in one of our many events or making a donation”. 

Andrew Muffet, Brand Manager at Allen Kia Bath, commented “The Forever Friends Appeal is a fantastic local charity, providing outstanding, fundraising work for the benefit of the Royal United Hospital its patients and their families. Helping to provide a car for their Grand Draw this year was the least we could do.  We hope the winner Mr & Mrs Howell enjoy their Picanto!”

A full list of winners can be found here





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Royal Crescent Hotel raises £6,700 through Global Party event

Thousands of pounds have been raised to support a new cancer care unit at the Royal United Hospital.

Another donation has been given to The Forever Friends Appeal, after more than £6,700 was raised by the Royal Crescent Hotel and Spa.

The money was funded by an event supported by the Global Charity Trust held in September, as the hotel picked the appeal as its charity of the year.

Hotel and spa general manager, Jonathan Stapleton, said: “I am proud that the team at the Royal Crescent Hotel and Spa, alongside the generous guests and visitors who attended our Global Party Event, have raised this sum for such an important project.”

The new cancer centre, expected to be ready in 2018, will provide a healing environment for patients within the hospital’s catchment area, which covers Bath and much of Somerset.

Forever Friends Appeal head of fundraising, Tim Hobbs, said: “We are thrilled to have been chosen as local Charity of the Year for the Royal Crescent Hotel and Spa.

“And what an absolutely wonderful event to kick off the fundraising.

“Raising more than £6,700 in one evening is a really incredible achievement.

“So we would like to say a heartfelt thank you to the Royal Crescent team for hosting such a superb event and helping us get that step closer to making this pioneering new cancer centre a reality for our patients and their families.”

Plans for a new £23.5 million cancer centre at the RUH are well under way.

The new centre, which will replace old wartime buildings, will be therapeutic as well as having the latest equipment and technology.

The Forever Friends Appeal target is to raise £8.5 million towards the project, through donations and fundraising events.

The appeal has so far raised £6 million, with another £2.5 million to go.

The Forever Friends Appeal has also received a £4 million boost from vacuum cleaner designer Sir James Dyson.

Picture and article ©Bath Chronicle


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Fundraisers final donation after 13 years service

Stalwart fundraiser, Sue Tucker, is retiring after 13 years’ service at the Royal United Hospital’s Forever Friends Appeal.  To mark the occasion, Sue celebrated her last day with a party, which was attended by many supporters of the charity whom she has built relationships with over the years.  A dear friend of Sue’s and supporter of The Forever Friends Appeal, Angela Calvert-Jones was delighted to surprise Sue at her retirement celebration with a cheque for over £9,000 for the charity raised through the recent History Makers of Bath Exhibition.

Sue has worked on an immense variety of projects during her time as a member of the Appeal team. Within the past year, one of these projects has involved supporting Angela on the development of the History Makers of Bath, a major outdoor exhibition celebrating the great men and women of the city. Whilst on display in Bath City Centre throughout September and October this year, the exhibition attracted thousands of visitors to view the 30 large and colourful panels, which displayed a series of creative and inspiring images, together with information relating to famous and infamous characters who have contributed to forming Bath’s rich cultural heritage.

Organiser of the History Makers of Bath exhibition, Angela Calvert-Jones, comments:  “When I first told Sue about my idea to hold a Bath outdoor street exhibition to celebrate history makers of the city and raise money for the cancer unit, she was not only incredibly positive and encouraging, but she suggested she should come on board and help, which is just what she did.  I am thrilled that we have been able to mark her retirement with the surprise presentation of a significant donation from this project”

During her time as Development Officer, Sue has worked on securing several million pounds of support for the hospital, helping provide additional medical equipment and facilities to complement the existing high quality care at the RUH.  Sue’s passion for the cause and engaging personality has led her to build many long lasting relationships for the charity, including that with the Dyson Foundation.  One of the peaks in Sue’s career was Sir James Dyson confirming a donation of £4m to help build a new and innovative Cancer Centre for the hospital.

Tim Hobbs, head of the fundraising team at The Forever Friends Appeal, and who has worked with Sue for the full 13 years comments:

“Sue’s compassion and dedicated spirit has enabled her to build strong relationships with charity supporters and has helped provide medical services for every member of the community living in BANES, Somerset, Mendip and Wiltshire.  I know that one of her other lasting memories will be the role that the Appeal played in helping to fund the magnificent premature baby unit here at the RUH – The Dyson Centre for Neonatal Care.  It is a legacy for the hospital and the local community that any fundraiser should be proud of.  Sue has had a stamina and commitment to supporting the NHS over the years that has never waivered – we will miss her, but wish her well in her new life with husband Mike and her family in Devon”.

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Cyclist lacing-up running shoes to thank Cancer Unit

Cycling enthusiast Johannes Dethleff from Bath, who can normally be found firmly on two wheels, is stepping off his bike this March to hit the city’s pavements and run 13.1 miles. He is stepping firmly outside his comfort zone to say thank you to the Cancer Unit at the Royal United Hospital for caring for his girlfriend, Layla Redman, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2012 – just days before her thirtieth birthday. Johannes will be joining The Forever Friends Appeal’s team, running to support the Hospital, in the Vitality Bath Half Marathon 2015.

Johannes is no stranger to a cycling challenge and has ridden a variety of 100 mile events including a London to Paris bike ride, but lacing up a pair of trainers and going for a run is an entirely different matter. He comments: “I have chosen to take part in the Vitality Bath Half as both a challenge for myself coming from a cycling background and never having tried my hand at running, and to help raise funds for such a fantastic cause – the RUH Cancer Care Campaign.”

Having spent some time in the unit over the past few years, he explains: “I am also running to say thank you to the RUH Cancer Unit who saved my partner’s life a few years ago after she was diagnosed with breast cancer and for their support and care throughout her surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and now her ongoing recovery. The staff on the unit are brilliant – friendly, supportive and understanding and always willing to answer any questions and give advice. They were always willing to see us at short notice if we were worried or upset about anything and would go out of their way to help us through the most difficult experience of our lives and are still helping now. We couldn’t have hoped for a better team of people to be there for us and can’t think of a better way to say thank you than to help raise funds for a brand new Cancer Centre, not just for the patients and their families but the staff as well.”

Silver Bond places for The Forever Friends Appeal are still available and can be purchased on the Appeal’s website for just £35, with a pledge to raise a further minimum sponsorship of £175 for the RUH Cancer Care Campaign or a ward or department close to your heart.  But please be quick, as the entry deadline is Thursday 22nd January.  This popular race, located in the historic city of Bath, will take place on Sunday 1st March 2015.


The RUH Cancer Care Campaign is currently over half way to achieving its aim of raising £8.5 million, which will contribute vital funds to the building of a pioneering new Cancer Centre for the Royal United Hospital in Bath.   Events Fundraiser for The Forever Friends Appeal, Laura Pearce, comments:  “The new Cancer Centre will transform the care of our patients and their families here at the RUH – making them feel safe, supported and special at what is a very difficult time.  We wish Johannes and everyone running with The Appeal’s team the best of luck with their training over the next month or so and we look forward to cheering them all around the 13.1 mile course on race day!”

To sponsor Johannes, please visit his fundraising page at www.justgiving.com/HannesHalf

Photos ©Paul Gillis

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Buy a Brick this Christmas

Would you like to buy a gift this Christmas that makes a difference? Do you have someone who is tricky to buy for?
You can buy a brick for £10, a row for £100 or, for someone very special, a wall for £1,000. All Christmas bricks bought will receive a certificate to give as a present. https://www.foreverfriendsappeal.co.uk/be-a-brick

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Guitar signed by more than 45 celebrities to be auctioned for charity

A guitar that has been signed by a whole host of well-known musicians and celebrities is to be auctioned to raise funds for a lifesaving RUH unit.

Frome musician Leander Morales has spent the last few years getting the guitar signed, with the help of folk musicians Cara Dillon and Sam Lakeman, by more than 45 celebrities including Ed Sheeran, Paloma Faith, Queen’s Brian May and Coldplay’s Chris Martin.

The acoustic guitar was donated by Sounds of Frome in 2009 that saw Leander begin a mission to raise awareness of the Neo Natal Intensive Care Unit at Bath’s Royal United Hospital and raise funds for lifesaving facilities.

Leander said: “We had already auctioned off a guitar signed by Status Quo and I had heard that fellow musicians and friends, Cara Dillon and Sam Lakeman were recording at Abbey Road Studios with other well known artists. I also had a friend working as an official photographer for that session, Bob Condrey. He assisted Cara and Sam with collecting some very well known people to sign the guitar including Paloma Faith, Nick Mason (Pink Floyd) and several others.”

The auction was launched on Friday, November 7 at Cara Dillon’s gig at the Cheese and Grain and the current bid stands at about £1,250.

Cara Dillon and Sam Lakeman had twins cared for by the NICU in Bath.

Leander said: “It seemed appropriate to launch details of the auction with Cara and Sam as they have also been central to the campaign to raise funds for the unit.”

The guitar will be auctioned on eBay at http://bit.ly/gtr4unborn

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Following Black Friday & Cyber Monday – it’s #GivingTuesday

Forget Black Friday and move over Cyber Monday #GivingTuesday is here.

A global day of giving will mark the end of one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year.

Following on from the chaos of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday, 2 December, is an opportunity for charities to promote the work they do and encourage the public and businesses to donate time, money or their voice to help a good cause.

First launched in the US in 2012 by 92nd Street Y in partnership with the United Nations Foundation, #GivingTuesday is taking place in the UK this year for the first time and is being observed around the world in countries such as Australia, Singapore, Canada, much of Latin America and Israel.

Organised by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), with the help of Blackbaud the campaign is gathering momentum with 600 UK businesses and charities signed up to take part including The Forever Friends Appeal, RSPCA, Alzheimer’s Research UK and Breast Cancer Care.

Are you ready to help make a difference at the RUH? Why not make a donation today, get your company involved or even sign up to one of our events – it’s that simple! 


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Win a Car in the Christmas Raffle

The Forever Friends Appeal are very excited to announce that they have once again secured a BRAND New Car as the top prize in their annual Grand Draw which is underway and helping to raise funds for their RUH Cancer Care Campaign.

The Grand Draw, launched this week will give the general public the chance to win an Economical Kia Picanto 5 door car just in time for Christmas!, This super little car benefits from KIA’s pioneering 7 year warranty as well as £0 Road Fund Licence and up to 63.7 mpg.making it practical, fun and extremely easy on the pocket to own and has been generously provided by Allen Kia Motors of Bath.

The Appeal hopes that with the amazing top prize of a brand new car, and some great runner up prizes including a holiday, meal voucher for Brasserie Blanc, a Dyson Ball, 2 night stay in Jane Austen’s Bath home and many more will inspire the public to get on board and help equal last years £20,000.

Allen Kia Motors of Bath, which supplied the vehicle is also supporting the hospital’s charity by selling raffle tickets to their customers, and has even provided a loan car which has been branded out in bright graphics, with the slogan “Win Me!” with the aim of capturing the attention of the public to help promote the Grand Draw and the Appeal’s RUH Cancer Care Campaign.

Andrew Muffett, Kia Brand Manager from Allen Kia says: “We are very proud to be supporting The Forever Friends Charity again this year. This charity works tirelessly for a cause which everyone can relate to in some form or another. If our help and assistance is able to play even just a small part in raising money then it would be well worth it. We wish them all success over the next few weeks with their Grand Draw”.

Richard Gyde, Finance Officer for The Forever Friends Appeal says: “We are absolutely thrilled to have Allen Kia Motors kindly providing us with a car for a second year and we are confident that it will be as successful as last year! Taking part in the raffle is a fun and important way for us to seek the public’s support and help transform the care of patients and their families affected by Cancer. The loan of a car will help us tremendously and it will be visiting a number of shows and attending events in the local area over the next month or so to help sell tickets during the lead up to the draw date Friday 19th December 2014.”

If you wish to purchase tickets at £1.00 each or £5.00 for a book or happy to sell them on behalf of the charity to your friends, family or colleague please visit our ticket request page or give the The Forever Friends Appeal a ring on 01225 825961.

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