Staff at M&S in Macclesfield are celebrating a bumper year of fundraising for The Christie - by doing it all over again for another year.

Staff at the store selected The Christie as their chosen charity for 2019/20 and set about raising as much money as possible to support the bid to build a new Christie centre in Macclesfield so local patients can receive as much of their cancer treatment as possible nearer to home.

They set themselves a target of £3,000 and started fundraising by hosting a series of events including a quiz night and a race night. They also got customers involved with tombolas and raffles in store as well as collection buckets and contactless donation machines on hand. And they were delighted to end the year more than doubling their target, handing over a donation of £6,000.

They were so pleased with all their efforts, they have decided to do it all over again over the next 12 months for The Christie.

Brendan Wilkinson, who works at the M&S store in Macclesfield said: “As part of our community programme every M&S store has the opportunity to support one local charity per year and raise funds for them. This year staff in Macclesfield overwhelmingly voted to support The Christie charity with its project to bring a new Christie centre to Macclesfield. 

“Many of our colleagues have been affected by cancer personally or through relatives and friends. We felt as a store that the whole community would benefit from having this unit built in their local area, taking out some of the stress of long journeys into Manchester for their treatments. 

“With the help of our customers, even during these strange times we have managed to double our original target of £3,000 to just over £6,000 and we have chosen to carry on supporting this worthy charity and hope to continue our great work so far.”  

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. 

Anna McIntosh, major relationships development manager at The Christie, said: “We’re so grateful to the team at M&S for its support fundraising to help us with our ambitious plans for a new cancer centre in Macclesfield. The new centre will deliver cancer care to the highest Christie standards, but closer to where patients live. 

“Undoubtedly our fundraising has been slowed down with the pandemic, but we hope that as things start to get back to normal in our communities that fundraising for this vital project across Macclesfield and East Cheshire will pick up again. We still need to raise around £20m towards the overall cost of this project and this donation from M&S is a real boost towards reaching that target. 

Work on the cancer centre is expected to be completed by the end of 2021, ready for patients in 2022. 

For details of how you can support The Christie Cancer Centre at Macclesfield fundraising appeal, visit our Macclesfield project page

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.