Find out more about our meetings. Catch up if you've been unable to attend. Download the group's Newsletters below in pdf format.
You can register for our newsletters by contacting one of our team at
In August 2014 there was a Q&A Session. Here is that newsletter for download. Q&A August 2014
Welcome to two new members 'Lorraine' and 'Nobi'.
Donations: Denise shared a Thank You letter she’d received from Claire & Vanessa, Breast Care Nurse Specialists for the donation of £3,000. £1,000 will be put toward Electronic Tablets & other specialised equipment which will benefit patients being treated at PCH’s Breast Unit. The £2,000 donation, by Buckles Solicitors in Peterborough, will be put towards psychological support & assessments for patients who are BRCA gene carriers, before they undergo risk reducing surgery. Some of our members posed along with Nurses & Stephen Duffy for a picture handing over the cheque, this should appear in the next edition of PCH’s in-house Pulse Magazine!
FlyFishing: We shared the excitement of four of our members, Rosemary, Jayshree, Jenny & Val, who had recently returned from their Fly Fishing weekend in Scotland, ‘Casting for Recovery’. It sounded wonderfully peaceful, restful & ideal for helping with anxiety and recovery.
Speaker: Denise shared an apology from Caroline Lansell, who was unable to attend for personal reasons and welcomed Kristin, Occupational Therapist & Guest Speaker, who stepped in to cover Caroline at short notice. The topic was Anxiety & Depression, following diagnosis & treatment of Breast Cancer.
IMPORTANT: There is a Stakeholders meeting at The Cresset on Tuesday 20th October, 9.30am-3.30pm. All food and drinks will be provided for free. Parking is also free.
Please will as many people as possible be they cancer patients, carers, relatives or staff CONTRIBUTE to the ONLY opportunity you will get to have your say or express the kind of Cancer Centre YOU want for Peterborough.
Beales: Let's start with the cheque presentation to the Group by Beales. £800.00 had been raised on our behalf.
Donation from Buckles Solicitors: Stephen Duffy passed on to a donation of £2000. Denise has organised a cheque presentation to the City Hospital Breast Cancer Unit on Monday 7th at 2.00pm. Gina, Rosemary, June, Denise and Val to attend.
Sky Diving Fundraiser: It was great to see Jane again who told us about her tandem sky dive for Thorpe Hall Hospice, which she did with her daughter Lucy. It had been the experience of a lifetime and something Jane always wanted to do, her efforts had raised £2400.00 for Sue Ryder.
Peterborough Hospital Cancer Service User Group: Gina chairs the Group asked if any members were interested in joining. The Group aims to address any issues within Cancer Services and meets every 3 months at the Robert Horrell Macmillan Cancer Centre.
‘Hands On’Event: Jane wanted to promote a reflexology session for women with secondary Cancer at Tinwell Village Hall on 10th September. She also recommended a DVD by Breast Cancer Care, for women whose Breast Cancer has re-occurred.
Race for Life: Rosemary reported that she had taken part in the Peterborough event on 7th June in the evening. The event had been well organised and she had completed the course in 1 hour.
Buckles Solicitors: This month the group were treated to a highly informative and amusing talk by Stephen Duffy on Wills, Care Home Fees, Powers of Attorney and Inheritance Tax. He is happy to email leaflets on Guide List at the end of the Newsletter to any member who contacts him, details at bottom of Guide List.
Beales Fashion Show: Denise had heard from Marjorie that they had raised £800 for us at the event and had made sales of £2,000. She thanked everyone who took part Val said she had received a phone call from Anne Marie wanting to make a presentation, date as yet unknown, so please let her know who would like to come if the date is suitable.
Lymphodema Support Group: Gaynor had been for a review and reported that this group had been set up in the Robert Horrell Centre and their next meeting was on Tuesday 1st September at 6.30pm.
Other Business: Val felt that we should provide bra’s or wigs for women on low or little income.
Gill said that it was troubling that the counselling session were not being provided by the trust and thought that as a group we should highlight this concern and support the service being set up by the Trust.
It was a full and busy meeting in July with much to discuss starting with thanks from Jane Bradley for the donations towards her sky dive in aid of Thorpe Hall.
Strawberry Tea: We presented Val with a rather fine Dahlia plant for her lovely garden, as a thank you for all her hard work on the annual Strawberry Tea event of which £423.00 had been raised.
We welcomed Joy Keys from Malaysia to the meeting (She first contacted us through Susan on our facebook page) who is a great traveller and lives in Malaysia. It was on a visit to New Zealand earlier this year that Joy first discovered her breast lump. Joy is now a member of ‘Breast Cancer Survivors and Warriors’ and remains on Letrozole. She recommended Reiki and Reflexology after Chemotherapy. Joy shared her story with us...Joy is now a member of 'Breast Cancer Survivors and Warriors'.
Beales Fashion Show: the VIP event was held on 14th July- Jenny, Val, Jayshee, Mandy and Margaret volunteered to model the clothes. The event was more successful than we could imagine and here are the photo’s to prove it!....
Well Being Day: Rachel attended this event held at Peterborough City Hospital. Everyone there were at different stages of treatment or recovery.
Jane Bradley talked about her proposed tandem sky dive for Thorpe Hall hospice, which she is doing with her daughter Lucy on the 22nd July. Anyone wanting to help Jane and Lucy to reach their target fundraising can do so by Texting JALU88 to 70070 followed by an amount between £1 and £10 or on www.justgiving.com/JaneandLucyBradley.
Annual Strawberry Tea Fundraiser: This event is being held in Val’s Garden on Saturday 27th June from 3.30pm to 5.30pm, tickets are £5.00 and can be reserved through Val Tel. 01733 267005.
Beales Fashion Show: Denise, Val and Gill met with Beales staff to discuss their proposed Cat-Walk show. The VIP event will be held on Tuesday 14th July from 6–8pm and our role will be to provide some models, highlight the event through our local networks, friends and family (including to any VIP’s we may know) and provide cakes and buns. We need members to help sell tickets at £3 each & publicise the event wherever they can by putting up posters.
Well Being Survey: Gill talked about a survey she had carried out last year in the Oncology Department and which she had first piloted with PBCSG.
Headstrong: Margaret and Jaysee had been invited to afternoon tea at the Wellesley hotel and had an enjoyable time. Vanessa Phelps was also there and had donated the £150.00 she had won to Breast Cancer.
Just a small group of us met at our usual venue in the Holiday Inn.
Strawberry Tea Fundraiser by Val is Saturday 27th June from 3.30pm to 5.30pm tickets are £5.00 and can be reserved through Val Tel. 01733 267005. There's a plea for prizes for the tombola and a request to Morrisson's for the strawberries and cream.
The Robert Horrell, Macmillan Centre Well-Being Day was highlighted by Claire who distributed flyers about the day, it was noted that this was by referral only from consultant, specialist nurses or GP.
Parachute Jump. Jane Bradley is raising money for Thorpe Hall and will be ‘Jumping’ with her daughter from Stibbington in July, she has also been invited to a PBCSG meeting to tell us all about it.
NCVO (National Council for Voluntary Organisations) have their annual conference at the Kingsgate Centre on 9th June. This is an opportunity to promote PBCSG work. The event runs from 9.30–4.00pm.
Beales Fashion Show: Manager Barbara has contacted us in the hope that PBCSG will be involved in their proposed Cat-Walk show.
Fundraising. We discussed what we could use our fundraising efforts for this year. Equipment that has been purchased previously from charitable funds is a tattoo machine and headlight for surgeons to use in theatres. The NHS does not fund all equipment needed!
We welcomed our Speaker-Sue Shaw; Casting for Recovery (CfR) UK & Ireland. This initiative came about in America when a Breast Surgeon & a fly fisherman realised that many of the moves of fly fishing mimicked the exercises advised following breast surgery. It was conceived & started in the UK when Sue Hunter a breast cancer sufferer met Sue Shaw, fly fisherman competing at the All England Fly Fishing Club. As these ladies were in full time employment but wanted to progress the idea of weekend fly fishing retreats for breast cancer patients they set up processes & sought private funding.
On the two & a half day retreats people are provided with lightweight fly fishing tackle including flies, waterproofs include hat, fishing jacket & leggings & only need to supply their own ankle boots or wellies, spectacles & sunglasses. All Board & Lodging is free to us. We have only to get ourselves to & from the venues. (See details of dates/venues in the newsletter)
Val shared & sold Macmillan’s Big Quiz-2015 for £1.
Claire Hall, Breast Care Nurse Specialist spoke to Lingerie Manager, Barbara, from Beales with whom Denise, then discussed the possibility of us strutting the catwalk at Westgate House in the near future. They are in the process of having a catwalk built. Barbara asked for ideas on how to organise the show, what we can do & getting maximum publicity, therefore money for a Charity of our choice. We discussed this & felt a local, rather than National Charity may be the best recipient of our work & time!
The meeting commenced with a dilemma regarding the use of the room at the Holiday Inn for our monthly meetings.
Denise then introduced Caroline Lansell, a Specialist Occupational Therapist from the Robert Horrell Macmillan Centre The Centre runs courses such as ‘Moving Forward’ and on 22nd May will be holding a daylong event looking at a range of coping techniques.
Tonight we were focusing on Fatigue and how to cope with it. Improving how and what we eat; - a nutritious breakfast and lunch will provide the fuel needed for the day. Fatigue can also affect sleep patterns so although this may not be easy, having a good sleep is important.
Opportunities for Free Skin care treatments. Women undergoing treatment for cancer have the opportunity to attend a free ‘Look Good Feel Better’ workshop at the Robert Horrell Macmillan Centre, at the Peterborough City Hospital site. Workshops will be held the third Thursday of the month between 10.30am – 12.30am and to get more information telephone 01733 673118 and leave a message..
The Start of another year! Very best wishes to all for 2015. Some of us had already met at our post Christmas event at the Key Theatre to see ‘The Mystery of St Finnegan’s Elbow’, which had been a hoot.
There were just a few of us at our first meeting for 2015 so we used the opportunity to have an in-depth talk about the coming year. A number of issues had been identified and, being a small meeting gave us the time to raise them with the Breast Care Support Nurse, Lisa.
We felt let down by the lack of publicity in the hospital’s PULSE magazine and local media when we donated £1,000 to the hospital Radiography Department. Apart from the importance to advertise the group’s existence, Denise felt people needed to know what we had done with money raised from donations and events.#Lisa was happy to help remedy the situation and took some posters to laminate and put in Breast Clinic, Wards and Oncology. She also offered to contact Communications at the hospital regarding the publicity.
Left to right: June, Margaret, Val and Pat presenting the groups donation to the City Hospitals Radiotherapy Fund.
Denise asked the groups advice about members who have a reoccurrence of their breast cancer. She said in this situation members do not want to come back to the group as they feel it may upset people. This prompted Pat to say that the key word is support which is what we exist for and Zoe agreed.
It was great to see so many members including nurses Claire and Vanessa at the Christmas party. Val recounted the Groups presentation of a cheque for £1000.00 to the City Hospital Radiotherapy department. Members were shown around the new Gating machine, which had cost one and a half million pounds and was housed in a metre thick bunker. The machine wraps around the patient and Val thought it would be quite intimidating to go into. Sadly the hoped for publicity did not materialise despite the Communications team sending out photos and a press release to the local media. Denise thanked Val, Margaret, Pat and June who went as our representatives.
June highly recommended our proposed social event. a trip to the Key Theatre Studio to see ‘The mystery of St Finnigans Elbow’. We decided on the evening of Thursday 29th January. We need to book tickets by 8th January to make sure we can all get in, as the Key studio venue has a limited number of seats. Tickets are £12.00 or £10.50 for over 60’s. If you want to book a place please contact Val on: 01733 267005, Denise 01733 341491 or email
Denise reported that Sue Shaw who runs ‘Casting for Recovery’ a registered charity which supports women who have or have had breast cancer will be coming to our April meeting. It provides an innovative outdoor programme, the first of its kind in this country, which combines fly-fishing, counselling and education to promote mental and physical healing within a rural background.
We have also been contacted by Justine Thompson, Patient and Public Participation Lead for the Strategic Clinical Network and Senate (East of England) about a Macmillan research project questionnaire. It just involves a brief telephone survey information below.
Helen Manning, Yoga Teacher with special interests in cancer, thanked Denise for the invitation and the opportunity to talk to the group about the benefits of Yoga. She informed the Group that researchers in America had identified Yoga as one of three complimentary therapies that had provided most benefit to cancer patients. Women with breast cancer have been found to be amongst the highest users.
Yoga deals with the mind, body and spirit and is known to be calming for those who practice it and helpful in treating symptoms of mood disorders that are highly common among people with a recent diagnosis. After removing our shoes Helen then took us through a range of controlled movements with an emphasis on the spine, breathing techniques and visualisation.
Our attention was then turned to organising our Christmas party, which will be on Thursday 4th December. This year we do NOT need to bring secret Santa gift as we are wrapping up the unsold gifts from Val’s Strawberry Tea Tombola Table.
Val reported that the presentation of the Group’s cheque to the Radiotherapy department was arranged for Tuesday 11th at 2.30pm. Margaret and Mandy volunteered to attend, Rita and Pat also said they wished to attend.
Margaret had designed a floral bouquet for Rita to cheer her up and to say ‘thank you’ for her time as Joint Co-ordinator.
It was agreed that our social event would be a trip to the Key Theatre Studio to see ‘The mystery of St Finnigans Elbow’ which is ‘the wacky alternative to the usual Christmas show’ and preformed by the Eastern Angles. We decided to try and arrange a booking for Thursday 29th January 7.45pm–10ish. Tickets are £12.00 or £10.50 for over 60’s.
At Headstrong: Rita, an old friend and founder member of the group has had to resign and Pam Hills, who is another volunteer, is also leaving. This means there is a need to recruit and train some more helpers. There are volunteers in the pipeline but are waiting to have CRB checks. Gaynor had requested more Peterborough Breast Cancer Support Group leaflets for the Headstrong room which Denise had picked up and Mandy agreed to deliver them.
Denise distributed the Peterborough Breast Cancer Support Group posters for GP Surgeries. Margaret said she had not had any luck with Sainsbury who would not advertise the poster in-store, as we are not a charity, so she was going to try the libraries instead.
Val is looking to present the cheque towards the end of October as this is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Val had contacted Helen, who had given a large donation to the Group this year but as she was not able to attend Margaret and Kanta said they would be happy to go along instead. Denise felt this was an opportunity to publicise the PBCSG and thought it would be good to try to get the Evening Telegraph, Radio Cambridge and other free magazines such as ESP, Cambridgeshire Pride and Nene Valley Living, all of which cover a large area of Peterborough and surrounding villages.
Denise highlighted the Penny Brohn Centre website and encouraged us all to take a look. This Centre takes a holistic approach to Cancer care and provides telephone support as well as residential and day courses on a whole range of living well with Cancer. (www.pennybrohncancercare.org/)
Denise reminded everyone that we still needed to decide what we wanted to do for our January social event.