11 April 2024

We are thrilled to announce that we have two winners of our 2023 Fundraiser of the Year Award: Antony Rose and Michelle Gillies! These two incredible supporters went ‘above and beyond’ to support our vital research by spending 2023 raising funds and awareness in their local communities.

Antony was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2019 and has been a longtime supporter of Cure Parkinson’s since being inspired by our late founder, Tom Isaacs. Before embarking on his latest challenge – a ’50 mile slam’ – Antony had already taken on two incredible races for Cure Parkinson’s: the Thames Path 100 in 2020 and the South Downs Way 100 in 2021.

The ’50 mile slam’ saw Antony run four 50 mile races between April and September 2023 to raise more funds for our research. Towards the end of the year he decided to push himself even further by taking on the Winter Downs 200 (a 200 mile race with a 96 hour time limit) too!

Antony attempted to complete a ‘50 mile slam’ in 2017, but had to pause the challenge due to the impact his Parkinson’s (though it was yet to be diagnosed) was having on his health. Last year he felt ready to take on the challenge once again, so trained hard to prepare for the physical and mental toll. But running 400 miles is no easy feat, so support from friends and family kept Antony going:

Apart from crossing the finish lines and being out in some wonderful locations, it’s been about the people. My training and running buddies, support crews or friends who’ve been meeting me after the races – they all gave me some amazing boosts along the way.”

Antony Rose

Meanwhile our joint winner Michelle spent much of 2023 truly going the extra mile with her fundraising. Michelle’s father is living with Parkinson’s and she has found it incredibly difficult watching his condition deteriorate over the past 11 years. To help support our research, last year Michelle signed up to run the 2024 London Marathon for us and began fundraising straight away.

She set herself an ambitious fundraising target (which she smashed before 2023 had drawn to a close) and planned some wonderful events to raise money and spread the word about our work.

A particular highlight for Michelle was her ‘Soup and a Sweet’ fundraiser; a lunch event open to the community with homemade soups, puddings, toffee and fudge on offer. The event proved so popular that she had to create more space to accommodate everyone who came along, and raised around £2,600 that afternoon alone.

The support I received from the community of Peterhead was overwhelming and I can’t thank everyone enough. It feels very emotional to have raised this amount for a charity that is very close to my heart.”

Michelle Gillies

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