It’s double delight for Relay

THERE have been two reasons to be cheerful for the Banbridge Relay for Life organizers and participants.

On Friday past the group handed over £38,000 to Kevin Harper, the Area Fundraising Manager for Cancer Research UK.

The Relay, which was held in June, was opened by Joan Baird MBE, the then Chairperson of Banbridge District Council. Angel doves were released by Ella Liggett and C.J. McDermott.

It proved to be a double celebration as two tag-rugby teams, the Mengal Taggers and the Tropics, got confirmation that they had broken the world record for the longest continuous match in sports history by playing for 31 hours non-stop at the relay.

They raised an amazing £20,785 for Cancer Research. It was not surprising that their team, the Tropics won the shield for the most money paid in before the event.

Mr Harper was present at the Relay, as were Cancer Research Nurses from Belfast City and Antrim hospitals. Scientists from Belfast Cancer Research Unit, including Dr. Joe O’Sullivan, came along on Sunday to provide music and give support to the tag teams as they came near the end of their marathon game. They expressed gratitude to everyone who made the event so successful.

The Flo Mini Jo’s won the best dressed tent competition, which was judged by Joan Baird MBE, Gene Fitzpatrick and Stephen Maclean. Dromore’s Big Fat Gipsy Wedding were runners up.

The talent competition, organized by Peter Branker and judged by Joe McAleenan, David McKay and Stephen Maclean was won by The Teddy Bears, who also won the Best Team Games Trophy. The Helen Wilson Memorial Cup for displaying the best spirit of the relay went to The Pink Ladies.

The St. John’s Ambulance team was on duty during the day and Gilly and Kelly handed out suncreams to participants.

At 11pm candles were lit to remember those who are currently receiving treatment or who have sadly lost the battle with cancer. Thanks are due to the Patience family from Dromore who provided such beautiful music during this event.

The committee would like to say a big thank you to all who took part, those who provided entertainment, especially Barney Greene without whom no relay would be the same.

The Relay Committee would also like to thank Banbridge Rugby Club for use of their grounds and facilities, the survivors who came, the sponsors, the teams and all those who came along on the day to entertain, help or give support.

The Relay cannot take place without teams and sponsors. It is a very worthwhile cause. If you, along with a group of colleagues, friends or family would like to form a team and fund raise in your community for Cancer Research telephone 02840627764 or visit,

Remember, all teams must be registered before the event.