Widow from Diss to have her first haircut in 25 years in memory of husband, who died from cancer
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
It's been swaying from her head for a quarter of a century - but now Mina Patel is finally ready to say goodbye to her long locks.
The Diss grocery shop owner is planning to have her first haircut in 25 years on April 18.
The hair almost reaches Mrs Patel's ankles - she's 5ft 2in - and it will go to the Little Princess Trust charity to make wigs for children who have lost theirs due to cancer treatment.
Mrs Patel, 55, said: 'When I was little I always had long hair - I never had a fringe or anything in my life because I was worried about what it would look like.
'But the charity are looking for real hair, so I thought I thought I could do something to help.'
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Mrs Patel said after hearing about her plans, customers encouraged her to raise money for charity as well.
So she decided to fundraise for Macmillan Cancer Support in memory of her husband, Vijay Patel, who died of cancer a couple of years ago.
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She said: 'I was only going to give my hair, but then people said 'why don't you fundraise as well?'
'I don't like to ask for things, but then they said 'I would like to give to you.'
'Our family has been deeply affected by this awful disease, and I wish to support these two amazing charities that do so much to help cancer patients and their families.'
Mrs Patel said after she washes her hair, she dries it by hand, a process which could take two-and-a-half hours.
She said: 'It takes a very long time but I usually watch TV or do something else at the same time.'
The Patels started running their store in 1988.
Mrs Patel said she had always enjoyed running the shop, and liked talking to people who came in to buy something.
She said: 'We've been here a very long time.
'The customers have always ben very good, and they're always supporting us.'
The haircut will take place at Studio 4 Hairdressers in Church Street. Mrs Patel said she would not have her hair completely cut off, but would have to chopped back to a more manageable shoulder length.
To donate to Mrs Patel's appeal, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/MinaPatel-Haircut
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