Downton Abbey star backs cancer charity

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A charity supporting prostate cancer patients in Northamptonshire has welcomed the news that Downton Abbey star, Brendan Coyle, has agreed to be its patron.

Prostaid is hoping the support from Mr Coyle will help towards its goal of paying for a palliative care nurse for the county, which would cost up to £45,000 a year.

Currently, 10,000 men a year die of prostate cancer in the UK, yet it is one of the most treatable cancers if caught before it spreads.

Symptoms can include regularly needing to go to the toilet, pain in the back, hips or pelvis, or blood in the urine.

The charity is run by prostate cancer patients, including Alistair Fergusson, aged 69, of Excalibur Close, Duston, who is chairman of the Northampton committee of Prostaid.

He said: “With Brendan’s profile in showbusiness and the current popularity of Downton Abbey, it is amazing he has agreed to factor us in.

“There is already a nurse in Leicestershire and we feel it would be a good idea for Northamptonshire.

“I think with Brendan’s involvement we can reach the target a bit quicker.”

On his own condition, Mr Fergusson said: “My prognosis is not fantastic. It had spread slightly. I had to go through radiotherapy, but I have been in remission for five years.

“If you catch it early enough, you can get treatment. We are doing our best to make more people aware of it.”

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