Nottinghamshire Hospice

Adding Life to Days

Nottingham Forest donate tickets to Hospice patient with terminal tumour

Back in December, we wrote about one of our patients, Alan and his partner Jean, who completed a sponsored silence to highlight Alan’s struggle with his speech due to a brain tumour.  Well, we have an exciting update…

Nottingham Forest Football Club are giving Alan, who’s a lifelong Reds fan, complimentary tickets to a home game!

After hearing about Alan’s story from one of the couple’s friends, Richard Watson – a Derby County supporter, no less –  Forest have confirmed that they are giving four complimentary hospitality tickets to Alan for their home game against Huddersfield on April 8th.

Alan, who lives in Sneinton, has dysphasia as a result of the tumour, meaning although he can still talk about Forest and things he knows very well, he has difficulty with less familiar words. He has been going to matches at the City Ground since the 1960s and became a season ticket-holder when he retired.

“Alan lost confidence earlier in the year and stopped going out and doing things with his friends,” his partner Jean Blacow said. “Then my daughter Kara and her boyfriend, who are also diehard Forest fans, had a whip-round their friends to buy Alan Castle Club tickets for the Arsenal match last year – he gets panicky in crowds and with that option, we got a covered, quiet space.”

Alan has stopped receiving treatment now, so the couple are focusing on making the most of their time together and are looking forward to the match in April.

jean and alan sponsored silence

Jean’s sponsored silence was reported in the local news and was a resounding success, raising more than £1600 for Nottinghamshire Hospice. Jean’s challenge was to stay quiet for eight hours on Friday 9th December, no mean feat for someone who’s known for her chat!

Jean got plenty of support on the day, including staff and patients at the Queen’s Medical Centre, where Alan had a MRI appointment, and Rebecca Lister of Becca’s Facepainting, who painted a zip across Jean’s mouth to help her meet the challenge. Hotdogs and mushy peas were provided by Dave Fitzmaurice – another seasoned Forest fan – at the ‘King Billy’ pub on Eyre Street, where Jean counted down the last two hours.

“A lot of people tried to put me off, but I didn’t let them! Come half past six in the pub, I did swear a lot though,” Jean added.

Nottinghamshire Hospice provide care, counselling and social activities for people like Alan with life-limiting illnesses, across Nottinghamshire. Find out about our Day Therapy and Hospice at Home services, or donate in support of Jean and Alan through Jean’s JustGiving page, www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jean-blacow.

Post by Laura Gavin.