Three musicians from glam rock-inspired band Pouk Hill Prophetz have raised thousands to help fund research into finding a cure for the disease which claimed the life of Corby’s ‘Cat in a Hat’.
Lead singer and bassist Nigel Hart, guitarist Martin Brooks and drummer, Trevor West, 56, chose to fundraise for Brain Tumour Research when they learned that a fan, who became a good friend, was fighting a brain tumour.
Cat Anderson, who grew up in Corby and later lived in Uppingham, was diagnosed with an incurable brain tumour in 2014 and, after surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatment, seemed to be doing well.
Shocked to discover that brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer, Cat and her parents, Rab and Margo Anderson of Kettering, set up a fundraising group called Cat in a Hat under the umbrella of Brain Tumour Research.
Sadly Cat’s brain tumour returned and she died on June 14 last year aged just 38.
Nigel, Martin and Trevor visited the Brain Tumour Research Centre of Excellence at Queen Mary University London this week to learn more about the research.
The trio, whose repertoire includes hits from the 70s by bands like Sweet, Slade and T.Rex, also had the opportunity to place a tile on the Wall of Hope at the research centre.
The centre, one of four receiving funding from the charity, is focused on research to improve treatments for patients with brain tumours and finding a cure.
Each tile laid on the wall represents the £2,740 it costs to fund a day of research.
Led by Prof Silvia Marino, in collaboration with University College London, the team at the centre are studying glioblastoma tumours – one of the most aggressive and deadly types of brain cancer and the tumour that Cat died from.
Nigel said: “We quickly decided we wanted to get involved with supporting Cat in a Hat and organised charity shows and a rock memorabilia auction which together have raised more than £10,000 to date, including match-funding from Deutsche Bank.
“Today has been a fantastic opportunity to see how it’s making a difference to researchers.”
Trevor said: “When we met Cat a couple of years before she passed away, we were amazed at how positive she was, yet stunned that the life expectancy for brain tumour patients was so poor with less than 20 per cent surviving beyond five years, compared with an average of 50 per cent across all cancers.”
Martin, who is from Burton Latimer, added: “The tile we placed symbolises not only the money we’ve raised for research into brain tumours, but also commemorates our dear friend Cat who is sorely missed by so many, not least her parents, who have both become good friends of ours too.”
Cat’s dad Rab Anderson said: “I think what Pouk Hill Prophetz have done is nothing short of fantastic.
“We are so humbled that they have chosen to support Brain Tumour Research through Cat in a Hat.
“I am also proud to call these guys my friends now also.”
Brain tumours can affect anyone at any age, yet just one per cent of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to the disease.
Michael Thelwall, head of community fundraising for Brain Tumour Research, said: “Nigel, Trevor and Martin have raised an incredible amount for Brain Tumour Research and we’re really pleased they have been to see the research taking place at Queen Mary University London, and also place a tile on the Wall of Hope.
“Stories like Cat’s remind us all that we cannot allow this desperate situation to continue.”
To make a donation in memory of Cat Anderson click here