Dancing former Marines help raise funds for cancer patients

Avatar of Gill Young presenting the cheque to Leigh Carvill and the team. Image shows them standing in the garden area of the Cathedral Day Unit; Gill is on the left with five members of unit staff

Published 21 December 2022

Ballet-dancing former Royal Marines helped raise thousands of pounds to benefit cancer patients at the Kent and Canterbury Hospital.

The fundraising fun was spearheaded by Gill Young, who dedicated her year as Lady Captain of Walmer and Kingsdown Golf Club to collecting money for the Cathedral Day Unit.

With the help of members and friends she raised a total of £3536, which she presented to unit manager Leigh Carvill.

Gill said: “I chose the unit after a close relative had treatment there.

“When I mentioned it to members, it transpired that a lot of them had been treated there, were receiving treatment at the moment, or had friends or family who had used the unit.

“No one had a bad word to say about it – they really are a fantastic team and people were very generous in their support.”

Members donated prizes for raffles, including Christmas hamper gifts, and Gill also organised a cabaret dinner, which featured a group of retired Royal Marines performing a ballet.

She said: “They used to perform at the Royal Marines pantomime at the Astor Theatre in Deal but kindly agreed to come out of retirement and perform for us and it really was fantastic.

“Everyone enjoyed the evening and it represented a significant contribution to the total we raised for the year.

“I would like to thank all our members, and particularly our lady members for their support.”

The money will be held by East Kent Hospitals Charity to benefit patients on the unit with funding for equipment, for example specialist cooling caps to help reduce hair loss during chemotherapy treatment.

Leigh said: “We are very grateful to Gill and the club for their kind support, and we were overwhelmed to receive such a generous donation.

“It will make a real difference to our patients and help to make their cancer journey more bearable.”