A family-run construction firm which knows first-hand the importance of cancer treatment is pledging to raise £175,000 toward a new state-of-the-art cancer centre.

Bolton-based Seddon has once again teamed up with The Christie charity to help raise funds – this time for the new Christie at Macclesfield cancer centre.

Seddon – which has been supporting The Christie charity for nearly 25 years – has pledged to donate £250 for every new house it sells nationwide under its Seddon Homes brand.

(L-R) Jonathan Seddon, Jamie Seddon, Nicola Hodkinson

The fundraising drive, which has been announced on World Cancer Day, (February 4) will run until the end of 2022, raising vital donations for the new £26m cancer centre, which is due to open at the end of this year.

Seddon is aiming to sell nearly 700 homes nationwide to raise the incredible sum for the charity. And the Seddon family knows all too well how important the work of The Christie is, with two 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, was diagnosed with breast cancer and started treatment there.

Nicola began her treatment at The Christie in February 2019, and over a seven-month period underwent chemotherapy and targeted therapy, followed by surgery and further radiotherapy. In September that same year, she was declared cancer-free.  

Nicola Hodkinson, director at Seddon and former Christie patient, said: “We all know about The Christie and the amazing work it has done over the past 120 years with its research and the individual care it offers, but you really only get a sense of The Christie when you walk through the front door.

“It is not a normal hospital; it doesn’t feel or smell like one. It’s unique and that uniqueness comes from its values and The Christie teams who dedicate every day to making a patient’s cancer a bit more bearable, which is sadly something I’ve experienced first-hand. 

“The Christie is about life and hope, and if this could be bottled there would be no cancer.”

Seddon began supporting The Christie charity in 1997 when, as part of Seddon’s centenary celebrations, staff raised many thousands of pounds that helped to fund two 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 two years, Seddon staff ran, cycled, swam and walked hundreds of miles in teambuilding and fundraising events.

In 2017, Seddon committed to a further two-year fundraising partnership by making The Christie its Charity of Choice, with all national fundraising initiatives supporting the charity.

Over the years the company has raised an incredible £875,000 and helped fund a wide variety of projects and contributed to the development of a range of pioneering treatments and valuable cancer research, including proton beam therapy research. 

Marie Toller, head of major relationships at The Christie charity, said: “We are thrilled at this latest pledge of support from Seddon which is a much respected and longstanding supporter of our charity.

“It is through partnerships like this that we can bring the vision of a new cancer centre in Macclesfield to reality. It is an extremely generous pledge from Seddon which is very much appreciated and will directly improve services for a huge number of patients for many years to come.”

Jamie Seddon, director at Seddon and Nicola’s brother, says: “The Christie has been such a part of our family for the last 25 years; we have cycled, swam and hiked over every large peak in the UK repeatedly to raise funds for the fabulous work it does. Unfortunately, we have also had to take advantage of the care that it tirelessly provided our loved ones when they have been in need.

“We are all indebted to The Christie and are pleased we are in a position to continue our support of this incredibly worthy cause.”

Jonathan Seddon, director at Seddon, and Nicola and Jamie’s brother, said: “The Christie provides life enhancing treatment and hope for their patients. We are proud to support such an extraordinary charity.”

You can see a video of Nicola talking about why Seddon are supporting The Christie at Macclesfield campaign on The Christie YouTube channel.

The Christie at Macclesfield will transform 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 existing Christie patients a year. 

It will bring 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 a wider range of clinical trials. Around 40,000 appointments per year will take place at the new centre. 

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.

The Christie NHS Foundation Trust was the first specialist trust to be rated as ‘Outstanding’ twice (in 2016 and 2018) by the health regulator the Care Quality Commission (CQC). It referred to The Christie as ‘a leader in cancer care’ and ‘a pioneer in developing innovative solutions to cancer care.’ The CQC praised the Trust’s staff which it said ‘go the extra mile to meet the needs of patients and their families’ and that they were ‘exceptionally kind and caring.’ In 2017, the CQC rated The Christie as the best specialist trust in the country, and one of the top three trusts overall in England. 

You can find out how to support the project on The Christie Cancer Centre at Macclesfield fundraising appeal page.