A TEENAGER who battled cancer is raising money for the charity that supported her through her illness.
Clitheroe Grammar School student Francesca Wheatley was inspired to arrange the charity ball, which will be held at the Mytton Fold Hotel, in Langho, after two of her best friends from her hospital ward passed away within just a couple of months of each other.
The 17-year-old, who is now in remission after receiving treatment for Hodgkin Lymphoma, wanted to raise cash for CLIC Sargent, which supported her and her friends.
Francesca, who lives with her parents Steven and Katherine in Woodlands Park, Whalley, said: “When I lost my two friends, it really made me kick things into action.
“It was a reality hit that I really needed to do something for CLIC Sar-gent.
“The charity did lots of things for me, but mostly provided me with a support group, which is where I met my friends.
“The hospital had never experienced such close friends dying within such a short time to each other before.”
Francesca was diag-nosed with cancer at the age of 14 and was treated at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital and The Christie.
And after successful treat-ment, which involved intensive chemotherapy, and despite missing a third of her schooling, the ‘inspirational’ teen got an A*, five As, four Bs and a D grade and is now studying for A-levels in politics, religious education and geography.
She was also selected to carry the Olympic Torch through Croston as rec-ognition of her bravery and determination.
Lucy Caldicott, CLIC Sargent director of fundraising, said: “Fran-cesca is nothing short of an inspiration to every child, young person and family affected by cancer.
“To have been through what she has and still be able to do all the amazing things she has done is testament to her incre-dible strength of character, and she richly deserved the chance to carry the Olympic Torch through her home town during the summer.
“We cannot thank her enough for all the fundraising and aware-ness raising that she has done.”
The fundraising ball will be held on July 19 next year which would have been one of Francesca’s friend’s 19th birthday.
Tickets cost £25 and there will be a raffle and DJ.
To buy a ticket or to donate a raffle prize, send an email to francesca3004 @hotmail.co.uk