People from all corners of the borough came together on May Bank Holiday Sunday for The Great Croydon 5k – the first sponsored walk in aid of The Lily Pad Appeal .

Teams of children, families, colleagues and dogs braved a very brisk wind and made it down to the park for an early start to run for the appeal which aims to raise £750, 000 for a state-of-the-art Children’s Oncology Unit as part of the new Integrated Paediatric Village at Croydon University Hospital. Head of The Chartwell Cancer Trust, Michael Douglas, the charity leading the appeal, was joined by Councillor Vidhi Mohan and Mayor Bernadette Khan who officially opened the walk with words of encouragement and support.

Donations and sponsorship money are still coming in but the total raised will be in excess of £35,000.

Mr Douglas said: “We are thrilled to see such support and commitment from the people of Croydon. We are working hard to get young people in this borough the healthcare facilities they deserve and it feels great to know we have the community behind us”.

Amongst the 500 superstar fundraisers in Lloyd Park were students from John Ruskin College who raised over £1,000.

This redevelopment project will transform children’s healthcare for the whole of Croydon, touch the lives of all young people and families in the borough and particularly those bravely fighting cancer.

Dr Nnenna Osuji, medical director at Croydon Health Services NHS Trust, said: “The new oncology unit will be an extremely important feature used by our young patients who are dealing with cancer and help smooth the difficult path they face during years of treatment. 

“We really hope the people of Croydon will support us to help us reach the £750,000 target.”