news

Harry Enfield chips in to raise loadsamoney for Chelsea and Harefield hospitals

The TV personality fire the starting pistol on the first event of its kind for a west London charity

Harry Enfield did his bit to help raise over £40,000 for charity

More than 150 charity cyclists, walkers, a kayaker and barges took on a marathon event on Sunday (June 26) for the first ever Grand Canal Challenge.

The event raised £41,500 for the Royal Brompton and Harefield hospitals with actor and comedian Harry Enfield firing the starting gun.

Each charity champion tackled the 26 mile trek from Royal Brompton Hospital in Chelsea to Harefield Hospital via the winding Grand Union Canal.

Women are being invited to get nice and muddy at a Muddy Race for Life in Wormwood Scrubs Park on July 13.

'He was at death's door'

Speaking before the event Mr Enfield said: “I'm here because the hospitals are just amazing.

"My good friend's son, Will, was at death's door before he received a heart transplant and now he's living a healthy, happy life.”

The Old Orchard pub in Park Lane, Harefield hosted the finishers' party with a BBQ and life music helping to ease the aches.

A total 157 people took part, including 77 cyclists, 78 walkers, one kayaker and two barges.

'I'm still recovering'

CEO of Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals Charity, Gill Raikes MBE said: “The Grand Canal Challenge certainly lived up to its name in every sense.

“If I'm honest, I'm still recovering. It was fun and exhausting in equal measures.

“Thank you to all those who took part or sponsored someone who did – know what you have helped two wonderful hospitals.”

All the money raised will go directly to the two hospital to fund research, buy new equipment and help capital projects.

Life saving treatment

Pam Mann from Surrey took part after her husband had life-saving surgery at Harefield.

She said: “My husband had an artificial heart fitted two years ago. The care he received at Harefield was amazing and I am trying to do everything I can to raise funds and awareness for the hospital.”

Cliff James from Aylesbury had a heart transplant himself at the hospital in 2014, and was fit enough to walk half the route with his family.

He said: “My energy levels have come back and my breathing is fine. I'm a more relaxed person and I'm taking part in this 13-mile walking challenge.

“Life is great.”

Pupils at a Notting Hill school helped raise £243,000 for St Mary's Hospital last month.

View full mobile page