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The University of Southampton
Southampton Clinical Trials Unit

SCTU staff get active to raise funds for the 'CTU Moveathon'

During May and June staff from the Southampton Clinical Trials Unit joined other Cancer Research UK funded trials units across the UK to get active and take part in the Virtual CTU Moveathon. Staff chose their activity and the goal they wanted to achieve, and together we raised £2,400 within the SCTU and a grand total of nearly £6,000 for CRUK.

Below are just a few examples of how staff got involved and some of the challenges they took on.


Izabela Eberhart

Izabela Eberhart

“I wanted to get involved in fundraising, and I really enjoy cycling but I just haven’t had time for it lately (excuses, excuses!). So, in addition to being a for a good cause, the CTU Moveathon gave me the push I needed to get back in the saddle.


Izabela's longest ride

“I decided to ride 300km on my bike in 30 days. The biggest challenge was lack of time, as I’m a busy working mum. But exercise is great as it helps alleviate stress and it heals!”

Izabela is a trial manager here at SCTU. As well as her 300km cycling challenge, Izabela was the driving force behind the SCTU team, coordinating and motivating us all and liaising with CRUK and the other CTU teams. Thanks Izabela!


Geoff Saunders

Geoff Saunders

Senior trial statistician Geoff took on probably the biggest challenge of the SCTU team. He completed a huge bike ride from Winchester to Weymouth and back, covering over 326km (that’s over 200 miles) in just one day!

“I got involved in the Moveathon because my best friend was critically ill with cancer and would have died without new innovative research and treatment. Instead he made a full recovery.

Geoff's 200 miles cycle

“I’ve noticed I can keep going on a bike. I was going to do 100 miles with another staff member, Josh Northey, but he fractured his elbows shortly before the day of our ride, so I felt I should try and do his 100 as well as my own, as he could no longer do them.

“The first 150 miles was enjoyable, the last 50 and especially the last 25 was tough. I just had to make sure I continually stuffed food and drink down my throat all day so that I had enough energy!”


Claire Forbes

Claire Forbes

Claire is a trial coordinator and took on a quadruple challenge for the Moveathon – running, cycling, swimming and climbing her way to 400km.

“I’ve seen cancer effect the lives of people close to me and want to support the amazing research which is being done to help. Although I don’t work on any cancer studies myself, seeing the amazing work my colleagues at the Southampton Clinical Trials Unit do is so inspiring and gives me so much hope for the future.

“I set myself the challenge of running 100km (including a half marathon in the Lake District), swimming 5km, climbing 1km (vertically!), and cycling 294km - a total of 400km over a month.

“I exercise for both my physical and mental health. I love the challenge that sports provide. Nothing beats the sense of accomplishment when you look back at a run and realising you covered the distance completely under your own steam.”


Parys Hatchard

Parys Hatchard

Like so many people, many of the staff at SCTU have seen cancer effect their family and friends, and this was certainly motivation for clinical trials monitor Parys.

“In recognition of my nan enduring her chemo treatment for breast cancer this year (6 sessions of chemo, 3 weeks apart, for 18 weeks), I hiked 6km, 18 times, in 3 weeks - a total of 108km. I live in the beautiful South Downs and one thing it’s famous for is its hills!

“The CTU Moveathon began on International Clinical Trials Day, 20th May, which is coincidentally also my nan’s birthday, so what better way to honour her than by moving my lardy bum and raising money for CRUK!”


Jess Comper

Jess Comper

Jess is a senior trials manager working on urology cancer trials, several of which are directly funded by Cancer Research UK.

“I have loved ones who have survived cancer, so Cancer Research UK is a great cause to support with the CTU Moveathon.

“I recently joined a gym and started lane swimming, so decided to swim five miles in four weeks. I have never been a lane swimmer, so this was a whole new challenge for me.

“It’s great to do something that’s good for my health and gives me a real sense of achievement. Plus, I get to have some time to myself, and it’s an excuse to eat a nice slice of cake with a cup of tea!”


Liz's triathlon medal and race number

Liz Allaway

Communications manager Liz changed her challenge when she saw the amazingly generous donations from her friends and family and decided the goal she had set herself wasn’t quite challenging enough.

“I originally decided to complete the Winchester Sprint Triathlon, which I did on Bank Holiday Monday and which was hot, very hilly and great fun.


Liz sea swimming

"But people were so generous with sponsorship I decided to carry on my challenge throughout the month, swimming 10km in open water, cycling 250km and running 40km – 300km in total.

“I lost my mum to cancer in 2015, so whatever I can do to raise money for research is worth the training, exhaustion and combatting my fear of deep, open water (thanks Jaws!)”


If you would like to find out more about the CTU Moveathon or donate to the SCTU team, please visit our fundraising page.

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