Charity supporters get ready for Relay for Life

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Charity supporters in South Tyneside are preparing to put their best foot forward and collect vital cash for charity this weekend.

The emotionally charged 22-hour Relay for Life, which is taking place at Monkton Stadium in Dene Terrace, Jarrow, tomorrow and Sunday, is an all-night festival of hope and commemoration.

It is a unique fundraising event for Cancer Research UK giving the whole community the chance to come together to celebrate life, remember those lost to cancer and to raise money to bring hope for the future.

The event, which is now in its ninth year, starts at 11am tomorrow, with an inspiring Survivors’ Lap of Honour where cancer survivors walk the first lap.

It continues on throughout the night, finishing at 9am on Sunday.

One of the highlights of the event is the emotional Candle of Hope ceremony at 10pm, when hundreds of candles representing individuals affected by cancer, decorated either in memory or in celebration of loved ones, will be lit around the track.

Ann Walsh, chairwoman of the Relay’s committee and event organiser, said: “The Relay for Life is very close to my heart. It’s a unique event with a celebratory atmosphere and everyone who comes along takes away something special.

“The Candle of Hope ceremony is also very moving and is particularly poignant in remembering those affected by cancer. Candle bags will be decorated with touching messages and placed all around the track with tea lights inside lighting the way throughout the night – a message that cancer never sleeps, and for one night, nor do we.”