A RELAY challenge will be held in Basingstoke next month aimed at raising vital funds for a cancer charity.

The Emsworth to Basingstoke charity relay challenge will donate 50 per cent of its proceeds to a Basingstoke-based charity – Heartburn Cancer UK (HCUK).

The other half will be donated to Chichester District Foodbank.

The race will be held on Saturday, May 13.

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HCUK has been raising awareness of the dangers of persistent heartburn and funds to support early diagnosis of oesophageal cancer and its pre-cursor, Barrett’s oesophagus, for the past 20 years.

Emsworth Relay decided to support the charity with this year being HCUK’s 20th anniversary.

The race takes runners from Emsworth, cross country and through spectacular countryside, ending in Cliddesden where teams will celebrate with a presentation of medals and trophies for the winners, along with very well-deserved refreshments.

HCUK said there is a serious lack of awareness of both Barrett’s and oesophageal cancer although they are the seventh biggest cancer killer in the UK.

Only 15 per cent of those diagnosed with these conditions survive five years, the charity said.

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A spokesperson for the charity said: “It is HCUK’s mission to increase knowledge and understanding of this awful disease and to get people noticing and acting upon symptoms which are generally considered a nuisance but harmless: heartburn, reflux, sore throat, to name a few. 

“Sometimes these symptoms, although eased by taking antacids or over the counter medications, can be a sign of something more serious.”

Information and entry forms for the race can be found at emsworthrelay.org.uk 

For more information on symptoms, treatments, and support for those with these conditions, as well as how you can help the charity, visit heartburncanceruk.org or follow on social media.