Leading by Lesley’s example
A cancer survivor and her husband will be putting their best foot forward at this year’s Ribble valley pub walk, in aid of East Lancashire Hospice.
Lesley Rollinson, 48, was diagnosed with anal cancer last year and will be taking part in the 12 mile walk to mark a year since the cancer was discovered.
Lesley, originally from Great Harwood, but now lives in Nelson, has set herself the target of raising £500 for the charity by taking part in the trek on Saturday 23 June.
The walk, taking in the beautiful scenery of the Ribble Valley, will start at 11am at Whalley Abbey and is being organised by the Rotary Club of Ribblesdale in aid of the hospice.
Lesley said: “A few of my friends did the pub walk last year and they loved it. This year me and my husband Shane are going to do it with my friends Julie Dean and Denise McKenzie.
“I know a lot of people over the years who have had family cared for at East Lancashire Hospice. All the people I know have nothing but praise for the staff and the care that they give.“
Lesley was diagnosed with piles and had symptoms for almost two years before learning the truth.
She said: “I was bleeding from my back passage for months. I saw my doctor and I was treated for piles for over a year. I used the medication they gave me and it just kept getting worse and worse. I was later referred to a consultant and I was referred to the hospital for a haemorrhoid procedure under general anaesthetic.
“On the day of the procedure the doctors told me that they found some ulcers and sent me for further scans. These scans revealed I had anal cancer.
“My first questions was ‘is there a treatment and have I got a chance of a cure?’ If there was a chance of a cure I told them to hit me with everything.”
Lesley had a bowel resection and a colostomy bag fitted on 4 August – the day before her birthday, followed by chemotherapy and radiation.
In April this year, Lesley went for her 6 month check and scans showed that the tumour has shrunk.
Lesley added: “I haven’t felt this good in a long time. I have tried to be really positive all the way through. My husband has been my rock and my two stepchildren have been fantastic. I’m lucky that I have a support team behind me.”
Lesley, who works as sales office manager at Accrol Papers Ltd has tried to keep her sense of humour.
She said: “Work has been fantastic. It’s ironic that I work at a toilet roll factory.
“I can see how people can give up, but I believe in having a positive mind.”
Speaking about East Lancashire Hospice, Lesley said: “The Hospice is so important. It’s not just the person going through the illness that suffers, it’s the whole family.“
Registration for the Ribble Valley Pub Walk is just £10 per person and dogs are welcome. Online registration will close on Friday 8 June. After this date you can register on the day for £20. For more details, click here