THE fundraising goal for a new cancer centre is well on its way to being reached...thanks to a £50,000 donation.

Colchester Catalyst is supporting the Cancer Centre Campaign with the huge grant.

The charity, which offers cash to special causes, is supporting the Colchester Hospital's 2019 club, which was set up for businesses supporting the state-of-the-art centre being built in Turner Road.

The Colchester and Ipswich Hospitals Charity needs another £228,622 to reach its fundraising target.

Rodney Appleyard, development manager for Colchester Catalyst, said: “This idea was appealing to the charity because the project will help thousands of people with cancer each year to receive their care in a more comfortable environment.

"We were also impressed by the prospect of the new centre providing more space and comfort for family and relatives.

“After visiting the Mary Barron Chemotherapy and Haematology Suite, where people with cancer are treated now, it was clear to us the current spaces are too cramped and drastic improvements are needed.

"But we are very impressed with vision for the new cancer centre, which will offer radically better facilities."

The Hospitals Charity aims to recruit 75 businesses to become members of the 2019 Club by March 2019, each pledging £2,019.

It is anticipated members will raise nearly £150,000 over the coming year.

Mayor of Colchester, Peter Chillingworth, was also thrilled to hear about the grant.

He said it will add strength to his own cancer centre fundraising campaign, as he has included the Cancer Centre Campaign as one of his charities.

He said: "For those within the community who want to raise money for the cancer centre campaign - during the year, we will be organising a series of events.

"As well as indoor events, there will be walks and runs where people can raise money for the cancer centre and the other charities, enjoy the great outdoors while keeping healthy."

Head of fundraising for the Colchester and Ipswich Hospitals Charity, Caroline Bates, said Catalyst made one of the first donations to the cancer centre and it was very appropriate their gift will close the appeal.

Chairman of the Cancer Centre Campaign, Peter Wilson, said: “We are delighted to have received the gift from Catalyst.

"We’ve also had a phenomenal response from the community so far and even though we’re nearing our £3.25million target we can’t stop yet."

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