Tractor run through Harleston raises record amount for cancer research
It has been a record year for the Pink Ladies Road Tractor Run, with more women taking part than ever before and more than �48,500 raised for Cancer Research UK.
Hundreds of people lined the streets in July to watch 135 women from across the country parade on pink decorated tractors through Thorpe Abbotts, Brockdish, Syleham, Harleston, Lush Bush, Pulham St Mary and Langmere in aid of breast cancer awareness.
The women were led by Olympic torchbearer and tractor run organiser Annie Chapman, 70, of Pulham St Mary, who said the amount raised exceeded last year's total by more than �10,000 – taking the total raised by the event over the last nine years to more than �250,000.
'It's a phenomenal amount,' she said. 'It's taken us over our �250,000 target.
'I'm so grateful to everyone who has helped to make this a success and so generously donated.'
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Fellow Olympic torchbearer Rachel Lane, 29, from Wymondham, who has been battling cancer for several years, presented a cheque to Lucy Squance and Louise Cook, of Cancer Research UK, at a special event on Friday.
Mrs Chapman, who carried the Olympic torch in Aldeburgh in July, has now been nominated for a Queen's Diamond Jubilee 2012 Community Award: charity fundraiser of the year.
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Before this year's tractor run, she said: 'The tractor run is the most amazing, emotional experience. The last few years, the streets have been packed with people cheering us on – the reception is wonderful and most of the ladies feel overwhelmed by the support.
'It's very humbling. We just hope we can help to save some lives.'
The event, organised by the Suffolk and Norfolk branch of the David Brown Tractor Club, was started by Mrs Chapman and her husband John in 2004.
In 2008, Mrs Chapman won Cancer Research UK's award for Volunteer of the Year when the event broke the �100,000 barrier. She was in The Independent's list of 100 people who make Britain a better and happier place to live in 2011.
If you would like to take part in, or help with, next year's 10th anniversary tractor run, call Mrs Chapman on 01379 676324, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.ladiestractorroadrun.co.uk for more information.