Steam-engine pull for cancer unit

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A dedicated group of charitable men and women have literally pulled together to move a seven-tonne steam engine four miles to boost fundraising for a mobile breast cancer unit.

Steam engine enthusiasts Alan King, 69 and Clive Smedley, 52, both of Ilkeston, organised the pull, from Heanor Market place through Ilkeston and up to the Three Horse Shoes Inn in Morley to raise money for the mobile breast cancer unit at Ilkeston Community Hospital on Heanor Road.

After raising previous totals of more than £30,000 for lymphoma, prostate cancer and terminally-ill children at previous steam pulls, the pair hope to raise at least £5,000 for the unit.

“We thought this year it would be good to raise some money for a cause that directly affects women - and a lot of women were really keen to take part in the pull,” said Alan.

“The day was fantastic, the weather was good and everyone was in high spirits.”

“A lot of people came out to support us, particularly when we hit Bath Street which took the group a total of 16 minutes from the bottom to the top.

“We had incredible support from the build up right through to the end from the public and local businesses.”

Independent builders, KRM, of Nottingham Road, Ilkeston, supplied the 50 male and female pullers with printed T-shirts decorated with pink bras.

Alan said: “I’d also like to say a special thanks to Angela Taylor at Erewash Borough Council who played a vital part in making this event go ahead.”