Havant shop staff wear a hat and help us tackle brain tumours

HAT-MAD Bottom left, Alex Stack, top left Karen Jarrold, Mark Evans, Lorraine Martindale, Caroline Byrne, and Zoe Featherstone-Williams,bottom right, will be busy raising cash
HAT-MAD Bottom left, Alex Stack, top left Karen Jarrold, Mark Evans, Lorraine Martindale, Caroline Byrne, and Zoe Featherstone-Williams,bottom right, will be busy raising cash
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WHETHER you choose to wear a beret, a beanie or a baseball cap, it will be the thought that counts rather than the fashion.

People are invited to wear a hat on Friday to help fund research into brain tumours, sometimes called the ‘forgotten cancer’.

Wearing their headgear with pride will be staff at Specsavers, in West Street, Havant.

Store manager Karen Jarrold knows she is lucky to be alive after surviving a brain tumour.

Five years ago she began getting excruciating headaches, which she described as ‘like an explosion’ in her head.

Her GP initially prescribed medication for migraines and she was referred for physiotherapy.

Karen, now 41, received the news everyone dreads when she underwent a scan on her brain.

Doctors found a tumour the size of a tennis ball growing on the left side of her head, between her brain and her skull.

‘I had the scan and went into hospital the same day,’ said Karen, of Longwood Avenue, Cowplain.

‘The tumour was about 6cm by 5cm and was pushing my brain into my spinal cord.

‘I had the operation a week later to remove it.’

Despite undergoing major surgery, Karen was back home two days after the operation.

Luckily, she did not require chemotherapy as the tumour was benign and was outside her brain.

‘I feel lucky,’ she said. ‘As far as brain tumours go, I was lucky.’

Karen, who will be wearing a Panama hat, said it was important people helped to fund research into the cancer, even if it was just a few pennies.

She said: ‘Brain tumour research receives less than one per cent of cancer research spending in the UK.

‘It’s such a massive killer and it kills a lot of children.’

According to statistics, brain tumours kill more children and people under the age of 40 than any other type of cancer.

Specsavers in Havant will also be selling home-made cakes on Friday to raise additional funds. To get involved in ‘Wear A Hat Day’, visit braintumourresearch.org.