A BEREAVED family is ending the year on a high as they celebrate raising more than £17,000 in support of the Brain Tumour Research charity.

Since the death of farmer Adam Forster in 2014, his parents, sister, brother-in-law and three nieces have been supporting research into brain tumours.

In 2018 alone, they took part in a sponsored walk, organised a Halloween Ball, and raised £2,000 through their annual Santa Bike Run in and around Consett.

Mr Forster, who farmed at Camperdown, Shotley Bridge, and followed the Braes of Derwent and Tynedale and Haydon hunts, died aged 42 just 11 months after being diagnosed with an aggressive glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) brain tumour.

He left sister Kerry Robson, brother-in-law Carl Robson, nieces Lauren, Gracie and Ellie Robson, and parents Terry and Ann Forster.

His sister Kerry, who works as the secretary for the Northumberland County Show, said: “I’m thrilled with how much money we have raised in Adam’s memory.

“It’s been a real family effort and I’m sure Adam would be proud.

“Thank you to everyone in the community who has supported us and come along to our events.

“I hope we have helped to raise awareness in the Durham area about how devastating this disease is.

“Adam was a very private man in his illness, but he would be proud to think that by talking about what happened to him, we are making a difference to the lives of other people.”

Less than 20 per cent of people diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years, compared with an average of 50 per cent across all cancers.

Matthew Price, community fundraising manager for Brain Tumour Research in the North-East, said: “Adam’s family are an inspiration to us all.

“They have experienced such heartbreak but they are determined to do something positive in Adam’s memory. We’re extremely grateful for their ongoing support and congratulate them for such a momentous year of fundraising.”

Brain Tumour Research funds sustainable research at dedicated Centres of Excellence across the UK.

It also campaigns for the Government and the larger cancer charities to invest more in research into brain tumours in order to speed up new treatments for patients and, ultimately, to find a cure.

The charity is calling for an annual spend of £35m in order to improve survival rates and patient outcomes in line with other cancers such as breast cancer and leukaemia.

Mr Price said: “Brain tumours are indiscriminate, they can affect anyone at any age, and yet historically just one per cent of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease and we are proud to be working to change this.”