A few months ago we received a call from Ian Williams.  He was a friend of Colin Bloomfield.  Many people will remember Colin. 

He was a very good friend to the team here at Melanoma UK, and a number of years ago he travelled to Westminster to meet with a number of MPs to tell them of his experiences as a melanoma patient and to give evidence as to the efficacy of the treatment he had been receiving.   He was such a likeable man, he just told his story in such a compelling manner – he had a room full of MPs hanging on his every word.   Ian was calling to tell us that he had been successful in obtaining a place in the 2019 London Marathon and he was going to be doing this in memory of Colin. 

This is what Ian told us:

Colin Bloomfield passed away in April 2015 after a near two-year battle with skin cancer. He was just 33. 

A much-loved radio presenter for BBC Radio Derby, Colin shared his journey through diagnosis and treatment with listeners in an incredibly candid and brave way. The Radio Derby office building is now named Bloomfield House in his memory and a melanoma appeal set up in Colin’s name went on to raise £175,000.  

In this way, Colin left a great legacy in the fight against skin cancer: a legacy which also included advocacy work with Melanoma UK.

To me Colin was simply a great friend and colleague. Sometimes it was hard to reconcile the sharp-as-a-tack broadcaster with the man who once told me he had never used the washing machine in his own home because he always took his laundry home to his mum, Alison. But that was just Colin; he was a home-loving man who knew what he liked. The staff at the local curry house could be certain that every Friday “Mr Colin” would order his butter chicken. His love of “Neighbours” (in particular Dr Karl Kennedy) was only surpassed by his love of Shrewsbury Town Football Club.

Warm, friendly, funny, generous and brave, Colin was a man who made a big impact on many people. Working on his drivetime programme, he helped show me the ropes of BBC Local radio. I will always be grateful. 

It’s a shock when someone your own age is struck down by cancer. Two months later, it happened again when my friend Claire passed away due to complications caused by her own fight with the disease. And in November last year, a third friend, Dave, took his own life.

So I’m running this year’s London Marathon to remember my friends. I will be proud to hit the start line on April 28 with the Melanoma UK logo and Colin’s picture on my shirt. 26.2 miles is a long way but a few hours of pain is nothing compared to what Colin went through. It will all be worth it if I can hit my fundraising target.

I might even have butter chicken afterwards to celebrate.

To sponsor Ian and get him over the line, please click here