Pub staff go Hand in Hand to shed calories for cancer


The son of infamous British actor Oliver Reed will be helping to raise money for Cancer Research UK in Wimbledon next Friday.


By Adam Richards, Hunter Ruthven, Cat Shannon and Robin Woolley

The son of infamous British actor Oliver Reed will be helping to raise money for Cancer Research UK in Wimbledon next Friday.

Mark Reed will be auctioning off one of the lots in a charity sale taking place at the Hand in Hand pub on Crooked Billet.

Reed’s father was born and brought up in Wimbledon, and was a former regular of the pub.

The fundraising campaign also comprises a ‘biggest loser’ weight loss challenge, involving seven members of the pub’s staff.

George Gillet, 31, assistant manager, said: “We were sitting around one night, talking about losing weight, which people always talk about but never do.

“So we decided to do the ‘biggest loser’, like the TV show, with customers placing bets on the outcome. So far we have raised around £200.”

There are some exciting items being auctioned off on the night, including football shirts signed by Wayne Rooney and Fernando Torres.

Other lots include a signed Harlequins rugby shirt, Clarins products, meals in local restaurants and 60 seconds behind the bar.

The latter prize will see the lucky winner attempting to pour as much beer as they can in a minute, which they will then be allowed to drink.

Pub regulars have also chipped in with their support, with one even offering his professional services.

Michael Carter, an award-winning landscape architect, has donated his expertise as one of the auction prizes.

The pub chose Cancer Research UK, because several people closely associated with it are currently battling the disease.

Mr Gillet said the pub also has a connection with Rosslyn Park Rugby Club, a club which Oliver Reed was heavily involved in promoting and improving.

One of its members is currently fighting prostate cancer and this is the reason that some of the money raised will be specifically channelled towards this form of cancer.

The battle amongst the staff, to lose the most weight, is already in full swing.

“We’ve got a couple of leaders but I can’t say too much at the moment,” said Mr Gillet.

“Each week we give updates on the line up and the odds, and currently I am one of the frontrunners.”

Cancer Research UK, founded in 2002, has become the world’s largest cancer charity, and leads the fight to cut the number of deaths from the disease.

The charity is entirely publically funded, raising money through donations, legacies, events and corporate partnerships.

There are currently over 47,500 people who regularly volunteer for the charity across the UK.

Lynn Daly, spokesman for Cancer Research UK, said: “The life-saving work of Cancer Research UK is funded by public donations so we are always grateful when people put themselves out to raise money on our behalf.

“This is a great initiative by the Hand in Hand and sounds like a lot of fun too.

“We hope the loss of pounds results in the charity gaining quite a few too.”

For more information about the charity night, phone the pub on 020 8946 5720.









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