Sue Farrington Smith

Sue's retirement fundraiser for Brain Tumour Research

Fundraising for Brain Tumour Research
raised of £8,220 target
by 109 supporters
Retiring and fundraising
Brain Tumour Research

Verified by JustGiving

RCN England and Wales 1153487, Scotland SC046840
We fund long-term, sustainable research to find a cure for brain tumours


It was with much sadness that I decided to retire as Chief Executive of Brain Tumour Research on 30th June 2023.

This was a difficult decision for me brought on by my cancer diagnosis and treatment in September 2022.

I have always committed 100% of my energies to the success of the charity and our shared vision of finding a cure for all types of brain tumours but following my phased and then full time return to work, I realised that I no longer have the energy to able to run the charity in the way that I would like and need to.

In the interest of the charity and its future growth and for the sake of my family I stepped down but am delighted that I am able to continue to serve the charity as a Trustee. This took effect on 1st July 2023.

Having worked pro-bono for the charity and with the support of Justin, my husband, underwritten start-up costs as we set up and grew the charity in its first two years this has been more than a job it is a passion.

I have been overwhelmed by the many emails, texts and messages I have received and will not be a stranger.

So in my retirement year and in lieu of gifts I will be participating in several fundraising ventures to raise money for Brain Tumour Research up until 30th June 2024.

I was delighted to have raised £2,740 by 4th September, enough for a tile on the Wall of Hope at our new Centre of Excellence at ICR where they are researching to advance treatments for the deadliest of childhood cancers - DIPG - the type of brain tumour that took away my beloved niece Alison Phelan three weeks before her eighth birthday on 7th June 2001.

My next target was to raise a further £2,740 and place a tile at our Centre at Queen Mary University, London. They are also undertaking research into children's brain tumours along with studying glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) brain tumours, the most aggressive and most common primary high-grade tumour diagnosed in adults. Thank you to all who helped me achieve this on 21st December - a wonderful Christmas present.

So guess what - I would now like to raise a further £2,740 to place a tile at our University of Plymouth Centre, the UK’s leading specialist research centre for low-grade brain tumours. Whilst low-grade brain tumours are usually slow-growing, some can start to grow more rapidly, transforming into high-grade or malignant brain tumours. By understanding the mechanisms in the development of low-grade brain tumours, the researchers can explore ways to halt or slow their growth. With my own abdominal cancer being low-grade - this resonates even more with me now, as you can imagine.

I thoroughly enjoyed my time in both founding and growing the charity, incredibly fulfilling years. I am very proud of all we achieved under my leadership. Brain Tumour Research developed into a national charity, raised £43 million, established four pioneering Brain Tumour Research Centres of Excellence and became the leading voice for the brain tumour community in parliament and the media. I continue to be fulfilled supporting the next chapter of the growth of the charity as a Trustee and community activist.

Please dig deep

Together we will find a cure.

Sue xxx

25th April 2023, updated 4th September and 1st January 2024.

About the charity

Brain Tumour Research

Verified by JustGiving

RCN England and Wales 1153487, Scotland SC046840
Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer. Just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this disease. We are a leading voice calling for support and action for research into what is called the last battleground against cancer.

Donation summary

Total raised
+ £1,049.15 Gift Aid
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Offline donations

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