Friends hope to send terminally ill Suffolk mum on dream holiday
- Credit: BETHANY SMITH
Friends of a Suffolk mum with terminal cancer are hoping to raise £5,000 to send her on a dream holiday with her family.
Beth Pitt Roche, 27, from Bury St Edmunds, was told that her breast cancer had spread to other parts of her body, including her ribs, spine and hips, in May 2020.
She also has 12 tumours on her brain and has to have regular sessions of chemotherapy, while at one point she was only given four months to live.
The implications of her condition also make it very difficult for her to go away on holiday because of her treatment needs and the problems with insurance.
However, her close friend Jade Woodland, 29, has stepped in to help by organising a climb of Mount Snowdon with four friends to raise enough to cover not just travel, insurance and accommodation, but other costs associated with the trip, such as clothing.
Initially, Miss Woodland had set a target of £3,000, but was so surprised by the rapid response from the public - raising £1,000 on the first day - that she now hopes to meet her preferred total of £5,000.
Miss Woodland, who is also from Bury St Edmunds, said she had become friends with Mrs Pitt Roche through the ‘mum’s circle’ because they both have young sons of the same age and she had first met her at around the time she was first diagnosed with breast cancer in March 2017.
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The idea for the fundraiser arose when Miss Woodland was discussing a family holiday she had in December and Mrs Pitt Roche remarked on how she would like to go away, but could not because of the costs involved and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
She had not even been on a honeymoon with her husband Nick, 30.
Miss Woodland said: “That holiday meant a lot to us and it was just such a lovely experience for us to go away. I went away with my parents and grandparents and I thought ‘if I had the money, I would send Beth away on holiday tomorrow.’
“Then I thought, well actually I could raise the money, but I did not know what challenge I would be good enough at, so I decided I could climb Snowdon and checked with Beth first.
“I said to her, ‘would you be happy for us to try and raise money even if we could only contribute towards it?’ and she said, ‘yes, I would love to be able to give my children the experience'."
So she arranged to take on the mountain climb in Wales on May 14 when she will be joined by four people, including her friends Daisy Walters, Sarah Farrow and Terri Revell and mother-in-law Leigh Bryant.
She would like the holiday to happen at the end of June, but said this was dependent on Mrs Pitt Roche’s health and was hopeful of arranging flights through a friend, who works for a major airline.
“I doubt if there’s a family that is more deserving than them if you knew them on a personal level and this is just something that we can do for her.
“You think ‘God, if that was my family or my daughter in that situation, I would hope that someone would do something for them,” Miss Woodland added.
Mrs Pitt Roche, who has children Eden, eight and Indie, five, said: “It has been so humbling, not only to know that people like my friends who I love dearly, but also people that I have never met before, are helping to raise money to send me and my family on holiday. It is so humbling.”
So far, the Go Fund Me appeal has raised £3,778.
To contribute, visit https://www.gofundme.com/f/pittroche-family-holiday-fundraiser