Head shave raises cash for cancer charity

By MARYHAMILTONmary.hamilton@archant.co.ukTerminal cancer patient Lorna Flowerdew shaved her head on Monday to raise money for a charity supporting her through the toughest times.



Terminal cancer patient Lorna Flowerdew shaved her head on Monday to raise money for a charity supporting her through the toughest times.

The 69-year-old from Cromer has raised �721 so far, with more donations still rolling in, including over �200 at the event at The Cottage on Louden Road yesterday.

After hairdresser Anne Mitchell, from English Rose hairdressers in Groveland, had finished the cutting, an artist friend stepped in to draw two hares on the sides of Miss Flowerdew's head - along with The Big C's logo on the back.

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Miss Flowerdew said: 'It's incredible. I thought if I could get �50 that would be lovely but this morning when I was totalling up I couldn't believe it.

'I want to thank everyone who came along and everyone who supported me.'

Miss Flowerdew called the event a thank-you to the Big C, and simply 'getting to nature before it gets to me' - she expects to begin losing her hair in about a month, and decided that shaving it off would be a good opportunity to give something back.

She said: 'You've got two choices. You can do something like this and have a laugh doing it, or you can sit around being miserable. I'd rather do this than leave my hair on the pillow.'

'I did pick the coldest day of the year to do it, but I have a selection of warm hats. I haven't had a cold head yet.'

Miss Flowerdew hopes the total amount raised will be between �750 and �800.

Miss Flowerdew was introduced to the Big C just over a year ago, after she was diagnosed with an aggressive growth in her abdomen.

Although initially she was given only a few months to live, Miss Flowerdew is having chemotherapy at the moment, which she hopes will give her another year of life.

She visits the Big C Centre at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital when she goes for treatments.

The centre offers complementary therapies, counselling and other services. The Big C also funds equipment, research, support and care for cancer patients across Norfolk and Waveney.

But for Miss Flowerdew it is the staff at the centre who have helped her most. 'I can't explain why they're so good. It's not just about what they do - you can't just say, 'they do this, they do that,' because it doesn't cover how they make you feel.

'Dying is such a taboo subject. It's good to be with people who understand. You don't have to put a mask on.'

Miss Flowerdew worked in security for the WRAF for 25 years, flying all over the world. She is being supported by her extended family.

She is pragmatic about her condition. 'People say, 'Oh, aren't you brave' and I say no, I don't have a choice'.

'The way I see it is that I'm going on a journey. I'm nearly 70. I've had my life. I've had a very good life.'

Contact Lorna Flowerdew on 01263 511126.