World record bid charity match in memory of Karen

Two staff members at a Spalding sports centre are preparing to break sweat for charity in memory of an ex-champion swimmer.

 Stuart Cunnington and Lewis Pearson, both staff at Castle Sports Centre, Spalding, who will attempt to set a new world record for the longest badminton singles match ever played.

Stuart Cunnington (22) and Lewis Pearson (25), who both work at Castle Sports Complex in Albion Street, are to compete across a badminton court on April 6 and hope to raise at least £3,000 for the Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Association.

But it’s no ordinary game as the pair hope to set a new world record for the longest badminton singles match ever played in tribute to former Castle staff member Karen Sanderson who died of MND last July, aged 47.

Stuart said: “We were having a knock-around at work and then Lewis and I decided to do something for charity.

“We wanted to do it for something with a bit of significance and when we spoke to some of the other staff, they told us about Karen who worked here for a number of years.

“She was bubbly, outgoing and a lot of people were fond of her, so we’re trying to set a world record and raise some awareness of MND as well.”

Karen won a haul of medals and trophies as a member of South Lincolnshire Competitive Swimming Club in Spalding before going on to work at Castle Sports Complex for 24 years.

Her husband, Martin Plane, is helping Stuart and Lewis with their world record attempt by setting up an online page for people to make donations.

Lewis said: “We’re hoping to play badminton at the Castle for more than 24 hours and some of the staff have agreed to stay overnight and support us.

“Stuart and I are both following a strict regime of dieting and we are playing badminton regularly in a build-up to the day.”

The world record is currently held by Dutch pair William ten Zijthoff and Johan Drenthen who played for 24 hours, five minutes and 32 seconds in August 2009, raising more than £2,000 for the Foundation for Handicapped Sports.

To sponsor Stuart and Lewis, go to or call 01775 762178.



Memorial Website:

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Asbestos Awareness Week

I received this email the other day from a lady called Heather – and I wanted to share it with you as she is trying to do what we are doing for MND, for Mesothelioma.


“Hi there!

My name is Heather Von St. James and I am reaching out to you today because I would like to share something special with you. I found your blog while searching for people who’ve posted about awareness efforts they have participated in or support. I noticed that you’ve done so and I was wondering if you’d be willing to help me with a cause that means a lot to me!

Eight years ago, I was diagnosed with mesothelioma; a rare and deadly cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. I had just given birth to our daughter Lily, and was only given 15 months to live. After a life saving surgery that included the removal of my left lung, I made it my life’s mission to educate people about this deadly disease and it’s cause.

Asbestos Awareness Week is just around the corner and I was hoping you would be willing to help spread the word. Asbestos has been used for many applications in the past including building materials in homes, office buildings, and naval ships. It is STILL not banned in the United States today.

This year, I am asking bloggers to participate and spread the word about Asbestos Awareness Week by being a Voice for the Victims. You can find my awareness page here:

I hope you will check it out and share it on your blog. From awareness grows hope.. Each voice could save a life!

Hope to hear from you,
Heather Von St. James

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

MND Wristbands – Another grateful buyer


The success of the wristbands continues – raising awareness and money for MND simultaneously!!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

MND Wristbands

We’ve just had another new batch of wristbands come in so if you want to buy some MND wristbands (see below) then we have in stock.

They’re £2 each and 50p postage with all the proceeds going to the MND Association. 

If you’re having a fundraiser or going to an event soon, or maybe you’re just going to see a group of friends who you think might want to buy some then order some wristbands and sell them to your friends to raise that extra bit for such an amazing charity. 

It really is so simple and such an easy way to raise money.

Not only this but the idea of the wristbands is to raise awareness of MND and that is something so crucial to the fight against this horrible disease. The awareness is spreading slowly, but the faster it spreads the more people researching it and the quicker we find a cure!


If you want some wristbands then send me an email on with your address and the number of wristbands you want. 

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

MND Fundraiser

The University of Bristol Ladies Hockey Club raised £170 on Wednesday night for MNDA. Not only that but a lot of awareness was raised – which may be the key to success!

A classy 3 course meal and wine was consumed and everyone had a great time.

Thanks must go to Maddy Scott and Georgia Curtis for all their help on the night.

Hopefully another one to come soon!


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Siobhan Rock

On the afternoon of Sunday 12th January 2014, Siobhan Rock sadly passed away. She was with her husband, mum and dad at the time. 

May she rest in peace and her family stay strong. Thoughts and prayers are with you all at this difficult time.


She is now what she used to call herself: ‘A free spirit’

I just want to remind you all of how we came to talking:


I received an email a couple of days ago which really made me smile and has had quite an impact on me. So much so that I wanted to share it with you all so you can see Siobhan’s warm heart and gratefulness.

It reads:

Hello Laura

I found your email on your blog. I hope you don’t mind me using it.

I just stumbled onto your blog yesterday and absolutely love it because it gives me a sense of what is happening to others living with ALS/MND in the world. I find the stories very inspirational.

I am from Canada and have started to share my own journey with ALS in hopes to raise awareness. I have helped organize many fundraising events. One that I am very proud of was done last March 2011, an aerobic-a-thon at the University of Ottawa. Last year it captured media attention and over 100 people participated dancing and wiggling for four hours. We raised just under $10 000. Well, at least it is a start :-) Here is a link: We hope to raise more awareness and more money this year.

Also, I am working on a YouTube blog. I just want to share to help raise awareness  I would be honoured if you had a chance to view it. Your feedback is more than welcome. If you think it is appropriate, I would be happy to share the blog with others. Here is the link:
Hope it works, if not I can be found under my name Siobhan Rock or under “conversations with siobhan”

Warmest regards and thank you for this incredible blog you have created.
Siobhán Rock
Ottawa, Canada


As mentioned in the email, Siobhan now has a video blog on Youtube (link is above):

In her videos Siobhan answers a lot of key questions about MND/ALS such as, ‘does it hurt?’ ‘What’s the hardest part?’ ‘What has changed?’ 

From 2.45 of Episode 4 for me is a very key part – she shows the thought process of being given a glass. She thinks she can hold it and outstretches her arms but shortly realises she can no longer do this which usually ends in dropping it. A very good visual demonstration of how MND affects people.

Episode 4: 

I really hope you take the time to watch some of these documentaries as I think everyone can learn a lot from them.

A little message from Siobhan:

“My name is Siobhán and I live in Canada. I have always loved the great outdoors (except for mosquitoes), playing sports and teaching Physical Education. In summer 2011, at the age of 39, I gave birth to a baby boy, celebrated my daughter’s 2nd birthday, my eldest son’s 20th birthday, my wedding anniversary — and I was tragically diagnosed with MND/ALS.
At the same time, despite the challenges this disease is placing on me, I strive to live my life as fully as possible. I am thankful for my children, Jérémie and the two little ones, Ella, 3 years, and Dominik, 18 months and for my husband, Tom. The support from my family and friends is precious and provides me with much strength. This uncertain journey, of course, is rousing some anxiety and fear but I am determined to meet these challenges with serenity and a smile.
Thank you for visiting this YouTube video blog where I share my journey living with MND/ALS in hopes to help raise awareness.”


The following video is a happy-sad story. It tells of her sporting history, her young children, her older boy, how the disease affects everybody mentally and physically, and it really hits home how devastating the disease is. This is a very moving and powerful clip.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Santa Skydive

I recently received an email from the MNDA, which is below is anyone is interested in doing a Skydive for charity!!

Firstly, thank you for your previous support from all of us at the Association.

Fancy doing something a bit different? How about a Santa Skydive!

Dates: 27 December 2013 / 28 December 2013 / 29 December 2013.

Venue: Dunkeswell Airfield, Dunkeswell, Honiton EX14 4LG.

Please find enclosed further information about how to book.

You can also follow the link to our unique skydive page.

There is also a 10% discount on the 15,000 skydive for this special event.

Twitter tag: #santaskydive

Any further questions or queries please just ask, I would be delighted to help.

Please do pass onto anyone who you think maybe interested.

With very best wishes


Sarah Hampton, MSc, MInstF (Dip)
Regional Fundraiser Team Leader (South)
Motor Neurone Disease Association
DD: 01237 451925
Mobile: 07918 745243

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment