Victoria Leggett, Education correspondent
Tuesday, February 5, 2013
A husband planning to ride more than 800 miles in just three days for charity said his suffering would be nothing compared with his wife’s battle against cancer.
Peter Bussey plans to complete the London-Edinburgh-London bike ride this summer in the hope of raising thousands of pounds for charity.
The 50-year-old, who lives to the south of Norwich, has been inspired to take part by his wife Emma Bussey, 44, who was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer in October.
He said: “It’s quite difficult knowing someone you love, your wife, is going through this.
“I had toyed with doing the ride anyway. Then when this happened I said ‘we will do it and we will find a charity linked with cancer to do it for.”
Participants have a maximum of five days from July 28 to complete the route but, following a challenge from his boss and the promise of further sponsorship, the 50-year-old aims to do it in three.
It will mean cycling for about 18 hours a day with a maximum of four hours sleep with meal breaks.
“If you’re going to do something for charity, it’s got to be difficult,” said Mr Bussey, who is an accountant with the R G Carter group. “Compared with the suffering Emma’s going through, I’ve got three days. I will be exhausted at the end of it, if I manage it. I’m going to be doing it for 18 hours a day. But I’ve only got to do that for three days.”
EDP Future 50 member Mrs Bussey, who runs Anglia Business Cleaning, was found to have a tumour on her oesophagus in October.
She has already been through nine weeks of chemotherapy and taken more than 500 chemotherapy tablets. In about five weeks she will undergo an operation to have her oesophagus and most of her stomach removed, meaning she will never be able to eat normally again. After a further five weeks she will begin her chemotherapy again.
The 44-year-old, who is also part of a drug trial, said: “The prognosis is good. I haven’t asked about any of the statistics. There’s only one outcome – and it’s not dead.”
The couple have chosen the Norfolk and Norfolk University Hospital Trust Fund as the beneficiary of money raised by Mr Bussey. It will be specifically linked to the work of her surgeon Ed Cheong.
Their first aim is to raise £3,000 to fund a piece of monitoring equipment for Gissing Ward which would allow patients undergoing the same treatment as Mrs Bussey to return to the ward instead of going into intensive care. Any additional money will help fund a drug trial planned by Mr Cheong.
“We wanted to pick a charity which was specifically linked to the cancer I have and help people who are going through what I am going through,” said Mrs Bussey.
Other friends are also planning to raise money – one person is running the Norwich Half Marathon and three choirs Mrs Bussey sings with hope to organise a concert – and the couple plan to keep their fundraising page only until April 2014.
To sponsor Mr Bussey go to www.virginmoneygiving.com/PeterBussey2