Barbon pianist tackles zip wire for charity appeal

First published in Kirkby Lonsdale news The Westmorland Gazette: Photograph of the Author by , Assistant editor

by MIKE ADDISON A SOUTH Lakeland woman is aiming to raise £1,000 for charity by taking part in a hair-raising 1,000-foot zip-slide across the River Clyde in Glasgow.

Alexa Wightman, 64, a professional pianist from Barbon, is joining the event in memory of her mother, a radiotherapist who lived in Glasgow for more than 40 years.

Her nephew, Malcolm Kershaw, will also be taking part.

She is raising cash for The Beatson Pebble Appeal, which has a £10m target to fund construc-tion of the Beatson Translational Research Centre, a state-of-the-art cancer research facility in Glasgow.

Organisers expect the zip-slide event, over the weekend March 24 and 25, to attract 50 people and generate more than £10,000.

Participants will scale a 150-foot mobile crane before sliding 1,000 feet from the north side of the Clyde to the south.

“It’s the first time I’ve ever done anything like this, and I’m excited and nervous in equal measure,” said Alexa. “I’ve set myself quite an ambitious target of raising £1,000 and hope I’ll be able to reach it.

“I was keen to take part because my mother, Dr Maureen Cowell, had such strong ties to Glasgow and to cancer treatment. She was the first female consultant in radiotherapy at two Glasgow hospitals and was the radium safety officer for the west of Scotland for many years.

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“She was an amazing woman, and Malcolm and I are proud to be doing our bit to help continue the city’s tradition of excellence in cancer treatment.”

Dr Cowell began her work at the Christie and Holt Radium Institute in Manchester in World War Two before moving to Glasgow in the 1950s. She played a key role in helping the Christie Institute become a regi-onal service by setting up clinics in Westmorland, Cumbria and Lancashire.

To support Alexa’s fund-raising efforts, visit http://justgiving.com/alexa-wightman. And for more information on the appeal visit http://beat-sonpebbleappeal.org

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