A PROMINENT and popular councillor has spoken about his triumphant battle against prostate cancer as he bids to raise awareness about the disease.
Ron Clarke, who represents the Eton ward on East Staffordshire Borough Council, has joined forces with Burton Albion to urge supporters and men across the town to become Men United v Prostate Cancer, as part of a quest to raise awareness about the deadly condition.
The club will be holding a day of awareness and fund-raising for Prostate Cancer UK before, during and after its Sky Bet League Two clash against AFC Wimbledon on Saturday.
Councillor Clarke, who also represents the Burton division on Staffordshire County Council, has spoken to the Mail for the first time about his battle with prostate cancer.
The 74-year-old was diagnosed in June 2013, and was given the all-clear in January.
He said: “I was quite a healthy and active sort of person and I had no idea I had prostate cancer.
“I think it is fantastic that so many people that follow football will be made aware of prostate cancer.
“If it means more people can catch it early then it will save a lot of lives.”
Councillor Clarke is a long-term Burton Albion supporter and regularly supports the work of the Burton Albion Community Trust.
He also told the Mail he believes events such as the Men United matchdays are vitally important in spreading advice to men who may have cancer.
A spokesman for Burton Albion said: “The Brewers have thrown their weight behind the exciting new campaign, the brainchild of Prostate Cancer UK, for our Sky Bet League Two clash against AFC Wimbledon on March 15.”
Prostate Cancer UK is the official charity partner of The Football League, and the game is one of 62 Men United matchdays across the Championship, League One and League Two between March 1 and April 18, with fund-raising activities also supporting the campaign.
Anyone with concerns about prostate cancer should call Prostate Cancer UK’s free and confidential helpline on 0800 074 8383, or visit www.prostatecanceruk.org
Campaign call — Men United v Prostate Cancer launched to beat the disease
THE Men United v Prostate Cancer campaign saw comedian Bill Bailey assuming the role of team manager when it was launched in January.
Big names from the world of showbusiness such as Damian Lewis, together with England sporting icons Les Ferdinand have joined the new movement.
At the game on Saturday, Brewers manager Gary Rowett will hand on the mantle to a lucky fan Ron Clarke to lead out the team.
Rowett and AFC Wimbeldon manger Neal Ardley will sport the iconic Man of Men pin badges on the sidelines, and supporters will be able to follow suit and badge up themselves.
There will be added information in the matchday Brewer programme and via Albion’s social media platforms.
The match will also see collections take place around the stand, all in aid of Prostate Cancer UK and Burton Albion Community Trust’s Golden Goal Over 50’s members will be collecting donations.
Charity urges people to get checked for prostate cancer
THE partnership between Prostate Cancer UK and The Football League is aiming to raise awareness of the disease which affects one in eight men sometime in their life and kills more than 10,000 men a year.
Prostate Cancer UK’s director of fund-raising, Mark Bishop, said: “We’ve been blown away by the positivity generated by our Men United v Prostate Cancer campaign and as official charity partner of the Football League it’s fantastic to be able to further enhance that synergy as part of these special days.
“It’s great to see clubs up and down the country join together to make a difference to men’s health, not just on behalf of its own fans but on behalf of all men across the country too.
“Fans of every club will always back their heroes to the hilt, but by signing up to Men United they will be part of something bigger, part of a movement for men’s health where we are all fighting on the same team. The more that sign up the bigger difference we will make.”