Ben’s legacy to live on in Avenham’s Cheeky Santa Dash

Posted on - 12th November, 2019 - 12:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Avenham, Charities, Christmas, Health, Parks, Preston City Centre, Preston News, What's On in Preston
Getting cheeky with Santa are nursery manager Joanne Pierpoint (left) and nursery nurse Emma Reibbitt (far right) with children who attend Eric Wright Group’s on-site nursery. Besides the man himself, also supporting the dash are, from the left, Rosemere Cancer Foundation’s Rebecca Arestidou, Eric Wright Group’s Suzanne Taylor and Alan Taylor, who is helping to organise the dash
Pic: Rosemere Cancer Foundation

Avenhams Cheeky Santa Dash will return for its sixth year to help raise money for Rosemere Cancer Foundation.


The charity is taking over the Cheeky Santa Dash this year in memory of Ben Ashworth, who raised money for their charity from his marathons.

Ben was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2012 and came up for the idea for the 5 kilometre, two-lap festive family fun run around Avenham Park.

Ben used humour to try and raise awareness of bowel cancer and his Cheeky Santa Dash which he joined three times before he lost his fight against the disease in 2017.

The father of three ran 24 marathons raising more than ÂŁ40,000 for various charities, including Rosemere Cancer Foundation, after his diagnosis in 2012.

Read More: Cheeky Santa Dash returns in memory of Ben Ashworth

Dan Hill, Rosemere Cancer Foundation’s chief officer and Cheeky Santa Dash veteran, said: “We’re delighted to be taking on this event. Ben did a lot for us so it’s the least we can do to keep the run going.

“We are very grateful to Eric Wright Group for its sponsorship and hope there’ll be a good turn out on the day with as many people as possible in Christmas fancy dress, which really adds to the terrific atmosphere that year on year surrounds the Cheeky Santa Dash.”

This year’s dash will take place on Saturday, 7th December, starting at 10.30 am.

Everyone who takes part will receive a medal and a mince pie plus a drink (hot drink or juice) on finishing.

Adult (over 16) entry is ÂŁ10 and ÂŁ5 for children aged two to 15 years (children must be accompanied by a paying adult). Prams are welcome (free entry) and participants can choose to run, jog or walk.

Commenting on the event, Jeremy Hartley, managing director of Eric Wright Group, said: “We first began supporting Rosemere Cancer Foundation seven years ago and are delighted to support the charity’s Preston Cheeky Santa Dash as well as its 2019 Clitheroe Santa Dash and Burnley and Kendal Santa Strolls following on from our support of Walk in the Dark earlier this year.

“As a local company, we are well aware of Rosemere Cancer Foundation’s work to support those in treatment at Rosemere Cancer Centre and all of our region’s hospital cancer units and in recognition of this they were also nominated as one of our Charities of the Year in 2018 with a substantial donation.”

Read More: Ben Ashworth memorial plaque on the Guild Wheel unveiled

Rosemere Cancer Foundation works to bring world class cancer treatments and services to cancer patients from throughout Lancashire and South Cumbria.

The region’s specialist cancer treatment centre is at the Royal Preston Hospital, and at another eight local hospital cancer units across the two counties.

The charity funds cutting edge equipment, research, training and other cancer services and therapies that the NHS is unable to afford.

Will you be taking part in the Cheeky Santa Dash? Let us know in the comments section.

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