A Clitheroe cancer survivor is set to take on Mount Kilimanjaro to mark World Cancer Day and raise funds for a charity close to his heart.

Lee Penrose was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia,  a slow growing blood cancer, in 2011 when he was 31. 

He was admitted to The Christie hospital and had 12 months of intense chemotherapy, under the care of Dr Adrian Bloor and the team in the haematology unit.

Once Lee recovered from the treatment, in 2013 he joined wife to embark upon a fundraising event by canoeing the 60 mile length of the Caledonian Canal.

He remained in good health until the disease returned in late 2021 when it was more aggressive and needed specialist treatment.

Lee has now been inspired to fundraise for The Christie Charity as a way of saying ‘thank you’ to the hospital.

Lee said: “Once again, the magnificent team at The Christie swung into action and I stayed on Palatine Ward (best in the world!) for three months in an isolation room due to my poor immune system and prevalence of COVID at the time. 

"This meant I was unable to see my wife and daughters much and the only way was for them to stand in the car park and wave through the window.
“My most recent bout of treatment is now coming to an end, and I am back fighting fit for the moment so I wish to do something to repay everything that The Christie has given us.”

Lancashire Telegraph:

This time, Lee will join his oldest school friend Shaun Lister as they take on trek in February.

Lee and Shaun are both 45  and grew up in Burnley together but now Shaun lives in Corsham, Wiltshire, and is a commander in the Royal Navy. 

He said:  “Together we are heading to Tanzania to scale the 6,000m peak of Mount Kilimanjaro.

“It’s going to be hard, but worth it and will feel extra special knowing that we have raised some well-deserved monies for The Christie Charity. 
“I would like to mention that Dr Bloor has been the foundation of our care at the hospital. 

"His reassuring manner combined with a super intelligent yet caring approach to my treatment has always made us feel like we are in the best hands possible.  

"Having interacted with the hospital for over 12 years now, I can honestly say the dedicated, caring and sometimes fun teams across all departments work miracles on a daily basis. 

"Each day I feel grateful for the years I’ve had watching my daughters Mary and Abi,  who are now 18 and 17, grow to young adulthood as they now head off on their adventures travelling around the world and to university.”

The highest peak in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro is 5,895 metres tall at its peak and is the tallest single free-standing mountain in the world.

Located in Tanzania, East Africa, it takes around a week to climb.

The Christie Charity supports the work of The Christie NHS Foundation Trust providing enhanced services over and above what the NHS is able to fund. 

Lee has set up a JustGiving page ahead of his and Shaun’s climb: https://www.justgiving.com/page/ltdk-kili