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Thatcham man braves the shave to raise money for cancer support group

70-year-old wanted to give something back to those who cared for his wife

John Herring

John Herring


01635 886633

Thatcham man braves the shave to raise money for cancer support group

A THATCHAM man has raised hundreds of pounds for a cancer support group in memory of his wife. 

Malcolm Hannington braved the shave for Thatcham Support Group at George Frederick Barber’s in High Street on Tuesday.  He decided to donate his sponsored lockdown haircut to the group as it helped his wife Josephine who died with cancer last Christmas.

The charity was set up to help people with cancer and their friends, family or carers exchange views and coping tips, as well as providing emotional support.

Mr Hannington said his wife enjoyed attending the support group and made friends with people sharing the same experiences as her.

The group also provided her with uplifting pamper sessions, a canal trip and a Christmas dinner, just days before she died.

Group members turned up to support Mr Hannington outside the barbers as he went under the razor. 

Mr Hannington exceeded his £500 target and raised £770. Donations can be made at  

Following the shave he said: “I feel a lot lighter.

“It all went very well there was a good crowd”.

He said the barber was really good and kept talking him through the shave, stopping to ask “are you sure?”. 

On the amount raised, he said: “That’s amazing. I thought a couple of hundred because it’s only a small group, but that’s an amazing amount for them.” 

Mr Hannington shaving his hair follows him shaving off seconds in a half-marathon for Newbury Cancer Care on his 70th birthday last month.

He has raised £3,001 for the charity, which cared for and supported his wife during her cancer treatment. 

He said the challenge was a fitting way to mark his birthday and remember Josie at her memorial bench at the Thatcham lakes, one of her favourite spots. 

Mr Hannington said his wife “would have thought I was totally mad, but if Josie was alive I wouldn’t have done it”.

He said: “It’s just something off the back of that really.

“It’s done some good so I’m happy with that.

“None of this was really planned.

“It was only through grieving and wanting to give something back and it just sort of happened.

“The run started as a flippant comment and built up to where it was and the lockdown haircut.

“It all went well and it’s done some good”.

The Thatcham Support Group met at Thatcham Parish Hall between 10.30am and noon before lockdown and is looking to resume when the hall opens. 

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