A family-run contractor, Seddon, with first-hand experience of cancer treatment at The Christie, is celebrating raising an incredible £1m for the cancer centre over the last 25 years after fundraising activity was accelerated during 2022.
The contractor’s relationship with The Christie spans 25 years, helping fund a wide variety of projects and contributing to the development of a range of pioneering treatments and valuable cancer research, including proton beam therapy research and a new £26m cancer centre in Macclesfield.
Bolton-based Seddon has achieved this remarkable fundraising achievement during its 125th year of operations, a historic achievement for the contractor. Its birthday celebrations have been used to emphasise and encourage fundraising efforts throughout its community of staff, supply chain partners and customers.
The Seddon family knows all too well how vital the work of The Christie is, with 2 family members receiving treatment at the specialist cancer hospital. The late Christopher Seddon (MBE) was treated at The Christie for lung cancer from 2013 to 2015. In 2019, his daughter, Nicola Hodkinson, was diagnosed with breast cancer.
Nicola, director and owner at Seddon, began her treatment at The Christie in February 2019 and, over 7 months, underwent chemotherapy and targeted therapy, followed by surgery and further radiotherapy. In September of that same year, she was declared cancer-free. For Nicola, Seddon reaching the £1m figure is a testament to the community Seddon has built.
She said: “This is our culture; this is who we are. We’re a sociable organisation, so to come together to reconnect with each other after a difficult few years has been nothing short of inspirational. Together, we’ve walked across hot coals, jumped out of planes and climbed mountains. Every individual effort means so much to Seddon and shows one million ways to say thank you to The Christie for the life-changing work it does and to our local communities too.”
She continued: “Few contractors have the heritage that we do; 125 years of business is something to be immensely proud of. As a family-run business that knows all too well of the impact cancer can have on our lives, we are proud to support them in every way that we can.”
Fundraising efforts have seen managing director Peter Jackson complete a 125km canal walk from Birmingham to Manchester in June, and Seddon CEO Jonathan Seddon ran 125 miles, including taking part in the 2022 London Marathon and Manchester and Chester half marathons, whilst dressed as the company mascot, Seddy Teddy.
Seddon Homes managing director Mick Jefferson and project manager Andrew Finney raised funds by skydiving, and Seddon Homes finance director Stuart McLaughlin walked 125 miles between the firm’s developments. Various other staff fundraising initiatives have included golf days, football matches, the Yorkshire Three Peaks challenge, runs, bike rides, a raffle at its 125th-anniversary ball, and bake sales, which have all contributed to the generous donation to The Christie charity.
In advance of its 125th-anniversary, Seddon pledged on World Cancer Day 2021 to donate £250 for every new house it sold nationwide under its Seddon Homes brand. Around £75,000 has been raised this way so far towards The Christie at Macclesfield cancer centre, which opened to patients in December 2021. This incredible fundraising drive will continue until the end of 2022.
Anna Mcintosh and Marie Toller (front left to right) from The Christie charity visiting staff at Seddon to thank the company for their dedication and support in raising £1m for The Christie over the last 25 years.
The Christie at Macclesfield is transforming cancer care in Cheshire, the High Peak area of Derbyshire and parts of North Staffordshire, providing care closer to home for more than 1,500 patients a year.
It brings together essential cancer services into one purpose-built centre delivering local specialist access to radiotherapy, chemotherapy, holistic support and information services, outpatient care, palliative care and clinical trials. Around 40,000 appointments per year take place at the new centre.
Seddon began supporting The Christie charity in 1997 when, as part of Seddon’s centenary celebrations, staff raised thousands of pounds to help fund two new operating theatres.
The partnership developed further in 2009/2010 when Seddon became a Christie charity corporate partner and raised more than £400k towards a revolutionary treatment called radioimmunotherapy or ‘Magic Bullet’ – a treatment that blasts tumours with radioactive material. During these 2 years, Seddon staff ran, cycled, swam and walked hundreds of miles in teambuilding and fundraising events.
In 2017, Seddon committed to a further 2-year fundraising partnership by making The Christie its Charity of Choice, with all national fundraising initiatives supporting the charity.
Seddon is committed to continuing its fundraising efforts for The Christie beyond the £1m raised so far as it builds on its 25-year strong relationship with the charity.
Marie Toller, head of major relationships at The Christie charity, said: “Seddon’s incredibly generous fundraising efforts mean a huge amount to The Christie, so reaching £1m in donations is outstanding. We really appreciate all its support over the last 25 years.
“The money directly improves services and helps us to support patients, their families and loved ones during difficult times. It has also significantly contributed to the construction cost of our new centre in Macclesfield, making treatments even more accessible for our patients in the surrounding area for many years to come.”
The Christie charity supports the work of The Christie NHS Foundation Trust providing enhanced services over and above what the NHS funds. This includes money for care and treatment, research, education and extra patient services. Gifts from the public make a huge difference to the care and treatment that The Christie is able to provide to patients and their families.