Liz’s Banham Marsden March

Liz was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) in February 2021 and referred to The Royal Marsden for treatment. Two years later, Liz is still in remission and took part in The Banham Marsden March in 2022 with friends and family, raising over £10k!

Liz’s treatment at The Royal Marsden

"I’m doing really well and still in remission since having my treatment at The Royal Marsden in 2021 which is great news. I’m back at work three days a week which has bought some normality back and I have hair again!"

"My immune system is still compromised due to the tablet I have been on – this is medication I needed to take due to developing Graft versus host disease (GVHD), although I’ve recently finished them so hoping that my immune system now starts to get stronger."

"I’ve also started volunteering with Radio Marsden on their Saturday Brunch show and The Thursday Request Show so am spending time back at The Royal Marsden in Sutton for this. I’m hopefully getting my own show at some point too which I’m so excited about!"  

Liz W walking in Banham Marsden March
Liz W with group at the Banham Marsden March

Taking part in The Banham Marsden March

"When I took part in The Banham Marsden March, I wasn’t on any active cancer treatment (I’d finished my treatment by this point and was in remission) but was taking medication for Graft-versus host disease (GVHD) – to help with reactions my body had to the stem cell transplant. This happens post-transplant, when your new cells attack your healthy cells."

"I did the longer route of The Banham Marsden March – the 15 miles – and it was absolutely brilliant."

"It was such a warm day and the atmosphere was great, not just with people taking part in the event but from everyone we encountered on the route – we all had so much support. People along the way were cheering for us and asking us questions about the event, it was really lovely. We were prepared for the warm weather and had lots of suncream and water with us!"

"There is so much going on during the event that although the 15-mile route could have proved a challenge for me, I think my adrenalin from the atmosphere was up the whole day, so I didn’t get tired until afterwards. Some of my family even spoke to Radio Jackie, the local radio station in Sutton, along the way and told them a bit about why we were doing the walk. We also stopped off in a few places along the way to get food and a drink."

Sharing the day with my group

"There was such a big group of us and we were all together at the start line before going off into smaller groups during the walk itself. There were over 20 of us in our 'Smells Like Team Spirit'  team. The smaller group I ended up with towards the end of the walk included my parents, my uncle, my cousin and a couple of friends."

"We were a little further back from some of the others in our team but when we got to the finish line – the rest of my team were all there waiting for us which was lovely. I even did a little run through the finish line!"

"It felt quite emotional when we crossed the finish line. My Marsden March team was made up from such a mixture of people – friends, family, work colleagues and even friends of friends! To see such an amazing group of people who have all been so supportive throughout my treatment was really touching. I spent the rest of the evening on the sofa!"

Liz W and her group BMM

An emotional day that meant so much

"The next day I did feel completely wiped out but the memories of the event really started to sink in and we were continuing to get sponsorship monies through so I didn’t mind having a duvet day. That was quite emotional too, to see more money coming in and see our fundraising figure rising."

"We raised over £10,000 in the end for The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity which is mind blowing – I am so grateful to all those who donated. People are so supportive of The Royal Marsden, especially when they see where the money goes. So many people can relate to cancer as a cause to get behind."

"Not only was it emotional at the time of the event but the impact of the day and our fundraising felt emotional for days after. Reflecting on everything we had achieved was really special."

Liz W at Banham Marsden March with group

The best part of the day

"I have so many great memories from taking part in The Banham Marsden March, it’s hard to pick a highlight of the day! If I had to choose, I’d say it would probably be the start of the event when my team were all together soaking in the atmosphere before we set off on the route, we were all so excited."

"Straight away at the start line, you see so many people who have all come together for the same reason – so many people have a direct connection to The Royal Marsden, so it feels like there is a common want to support the hospital. The event has a real community team spirit for this exact reason. Walking down the street at the very beginning of the route you can feel the buzz of the event."

"All the volunteers at the event are so brilliant too, cheering you on the whole time and people in cars beep their support along the way!"

"I’d love to take part in The Banham Marsden March again, it’s such an enjoyable and uplifting event."


Find out more about the Banham Marsden March