Cycling challenge raises more than £4,000 for charity supporting Chesterfield girl with rare eye cancer

A group of friends have completed a cycling challenge to more raise than £4,000 for a children’s eye cancer charity which is supporting a young girl from Chesterfield.

Friday, 13th May 2022, 9:15 am

The group cycled 60 miles from Leeds to Chesterfield on Sunday, May 8, to raise vital funds for The Childhood Eye Cancer Trust.

Calling themselves the Inky Riders, they were inspired to take on the challenge by 11-month-old Maggie Taylor-Salt from Inkersall after her battle with retinoblastoma – a rare eye cancer that usually affects children under five.

She was diagnosed last November and, despite losing one eye to the disease, has been described as an “absolute trooper”.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Maggie will continue to be monitored by doctors as more cancerous tumours could grow

Among the cyclists were Maggie’s uncle Scott Taylor as well as David Fenwick, Paul Scragg, Russ Collins, Craig Hunt, Caroline Noakes, Steve Noakes, Nick Otter, Simon Otter Jessica Otter, Jackie Cooke, Russ Cooke, Mark Hill and Helen Wilkins who had to participate at home due to injury.

They have raised a total of £4,900 through online donations for the cause – completely smashing their original target of £1,000.

Clare Collins, who is friends with Maggie’s parents and set up the Just Giving Page, said: “By the time we’ve paid everything in there’ll be about £5,000. They can’t believe it.

"Maggie’s parents came to the Hop Flower on Sunday to see all the riders come back and I think her mum was quite overwhelmed.”

The Inky Riders cycled from Leeds to Chesterfield in aid of the The Childhood Eye Cancer Trust

Read More

Read More
Campaign underway to save 'much needed' Chesterfield play park

The Childhood Eye Cancer Trust (CHECT) is the only UK charity solely dedicated to helping families and individuals affected by retinoblastoma.

It provides support, raises awareness and helps fund research into prevention and treatment for the disease.

Maggie lives with her parents Jennifer Salt and Karl Taylor, and older brother Oscar, aged three.

11-month-old Maggie Taylor-Salt from Inkersall has been battling retinoblastoma, a rare form of eye cancer

Having been through four rounds of chemotherapy, she is currently cancer free but will remain under hospital care for years to come.

Her mum Jennifer said: “As Maggie has bilateral retinoblastoma, both eyes were affected. The right eye had a small tumour which has been treated with the chemotherapy and laser surgery and she currently has very good vision.

"Regular monitoring is needed in childhood as more tumours could grow.

"Maggie’s had lots of issues with her implant and prosthetic – she had both following the enucleation of her left eye.

The Inky Riders pictured with young Maggie after completing their challenge for The Childhood Eye Cancer Trust

"We’re expecting her colour matched custom prosthetic at the beginning of June and she may need more surgery following that as her initial implant was rejected by her body so she currently doesn’t have anything filling the gap left from the enucleation.

"It honestly has been awful because you don’t ever imagine your baby to have this. I lost my brother just after she was born as well so it’s been the most horrific year.

"I think, when something like this happens, you’ve got no choice but to carry on. Maggie and Oscar need us to be positive.”

She added: “A support worker from CHECT is always asking us how we’re getting on, seeing if we need any help, and they’ve even offered tickets for Oscar to go to Legoland.

"When she gets older, Maggie will get support for herself and how to cope with this. They’ll also put her in touch with other children who’ve got it so that she’s not alone as it’s so rare.

“I just want to say thank you to the Inky Riders for raising the money as it will go on to support not only Maggie, but other families and other children living with retinoblastoma.

Maggie has had four rounds of chemotherapy and had to have one eye removed due to the cancer

"Also a massive thank you to all the people who donated, it’s humbling that so many people are supporting Maggie and us as a family.”

Support your Derbyshire Times by becoming a digital subscriber. You will see 70 per cent fewer ads on stories, meaning faster load times and an overall enhanced user experience. Click here to subscribe.