14/08/2023 | Press releases

Braving the rain in memory of Dame Clare

Past and present East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT) colleagues have raised more than £2,500 in memory of much-loved orthopaedic surgeon Dame Clare Marx by braving the rain to test their pedal power.

The group rode from Ipswich Hospital to the Royal College of Surgeons in London – of which Dame Clare was appointed the first female president in 2014 – over the weekend of 5 and 6 August.

They covered an impressive 65 miles in pouring rain on Saturday before completing the challenge in drier weather on Sunday and receiving an “incredible welcome” from the Royal College.

Andy White, therapy assistant with the integrated therapies equipment team, organised the ride after Dame Clare replaced both of his hips 12 years ago.

He said: “The weekend went incredibly well, even though we were already drenched by the time we left Ipswich Waterfront on Saturday.

“But Sunday more than made up for it – we were made extremely welcome when we arrived at the Royal College, where we were met by former Ipswich Hospital chief executive Andrew Reed and given a fabulous buffet lunch. We were also able to take photos with the portrait of Clare and the bust which the Royal College of Surgeons has had made of her, which really was the icing on the cake.

“Myself and a couple of the other riders who had worked with Dame Clare in the past did get a bit emotional, but all in all I was chuffed with how it went and how much we raised. We couldn’t have done any of it without our support crew Tim and Corinne Rousham, along with Medequip Ipswich who let us have a van and fuel for free to get the bikes back.

“My legs weren’t too bad afterwards and I even cycled to work on Monday – although it was a little slower than usual!”

The group have so far raised more than £2,500 for Pancreatic Cancer UK in honour of Dame Clare, who died of the illness in 2022 after working at Ipswich Hospital for 27 years.

You can still sponsor them by visiting their Just Giving page. 

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