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Page last updated at 15:37 GMT, Thursday, 11 November 2010
Radio Merseyside and Clatterbridge appeal hits 50,000
Artists impression
Artists drawing of the proposed relatives rooms

The charity partnership between BBC Radio Merseyside and Clatterbridge, Your Cancer Centre, has raised £50,000.

A new push has now been launched to try to double that amount and improve overnight facilities for relatives.

It's hoped to build two new bedrooms with a shared kitchen and bathroom by the end of the financial year.

The new rooms will replace the current arrangement which is just a number of reclining chairs in a side room that can take only one family.

The partnership between the radio station and the charity began in March and is due to run until the end of April, 2010.

Current facilities
The existing overnight accommodation is very limited

It supports the work of the charitable arm of the Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology, which is based in South Wirral but covers Cheshire and Merseyside.

The unit is shortly to open a satellite centre at Aintree University Hospital in Fazakerly.

When the partnership was launched, the target was to raise £30,000 to buy two "chemo cars".

These vehicles transport specialist nurses and their equipment so that patients can be treated at clinics near to their homes.

The cash was quickly raised and the team then turned its attention to buying two pager systems, one for each site, that allow patients to check in and then wander into the gardens, or cafe while they await their treatment. The pagers are activated once staff are ready.

Andi Mac and Colin
Andi Mac with Colin from The Parachute Centre, Whitchurch

Next on the list was an £8,000 stereotactic head frame to allow people with certain types of brain tumour to be treated locally, rather than having to travel across the Pennines to Sheffield, the nearest centre offering the treatment.

The latest appeal for the relatives' accommodation comes at the request of the hospital, which says that when patients are very ill it makes a significant difference if their families can stay close to them.

The two new bedrooms will share a bathroom and kitchen, and allow families a much more comfortable night and the opportunity to freshen up properly.

The money has been raised by the goodwill and generosity of the listeners to BBC Radio Merseyside who have made donations directly to the appeal, or supported the fundraising efforts of presenters and support staff.

The first major event, a parachute jump by Andi Mac, raised more than £6,000.

Simon and Steve
Simon Hoban and Steve Coleman set off on their fund raising cycle ride

Since then, staff and volunteers have taken part in sponsored walks, marathons and cycle rides, and even river cruises aboard the famous Mersey ferries.

If you would like to donate, or stage an event in support of Clatterbridge, Your Cancer Centre, please visit Just Giving: Radio Merseyside call the BBC Radio Merseyside A Team on 0151 794 0984, or the charity office on 0151 482 7948.

Clatterbridge - Your Cancer Centre" is a working name for the charity "Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology Charitable Funds," a charity registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales, number 1051727.


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