Fife schoolboy's cancer charity ball in need of guests

Toby Etheridge with mum Alison. Picture: Steven BrownToby Etheridge with mum Alison. Picture: Steven Brown
Toby Etheridge with mum Alison. Picture: Steven Brown

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CANCER battler Toby Etheridge, 10, faces having to cancel a £5,000 fundraising banquet, after selling just 17 tickets.

He and his family planned a glitzy bash, with dinner cooked by former MasterChef champion Jamie Scott, in aid of CLIC Sargent, the children’s cancer charity.

But only 17 tickets have been sold and his mum Alison, from Cupar, Fife, says they need another 80 guests confirmed by next 19th Feb.

She said: “He will be devastated if we have to cancel.”

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Toby was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in December 2014 and has another two years of chemotherapy ahead of him.

He returned to St Columba’s Primary School last September after several months absent, but is off again with a bout of pneumonia.

Alison said: “He said from day one that he wanted to fundraise, because he wanted to give something back to the people who have helped him.”

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Toby has a CLIC Sargent nurse and when he is in the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh the charity also provides a play therapist.

To help the cause, Toby has embarked on a series of fundraisers, including dying his hair purple before shaving it off, while his dad, Richie, is to cycle 300km up the coast of Brazil in September.

But Toby’s 1st Magical Ball, in Cupar’s Corn Exchange on March 1, will be his biggest do to date.

The youngster, who has older siblings Jessica, 18, and Samuel, 15, has been heavily involved in organising the evening, choosing the colour theme and discussing the menu with Jamie.

Alison said: “People may be waiting until the last minute, but we have to let Jamie, CLIC Sargent and others involved know whether it can go ahead.”

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Tickets are available through Toby’s Facebook page, Toby’s Magical Journey to be Cancer Free, the Brown Paper Tickets website and outlets in Cupar including the SNP office in Bonnygate.