WHEN Stewart Crowe realised his swimming club needed to raise £1.5m for a new pool, he signed up for a 55-mile bike ride to help with fundraising – but the 72-year-old ended up with more than just sore legs.
The Fareham Nomad coach began training for the London to Brighton bike ride 2019 last year but after a few sessions Stewart noticed blood in his urine.
He said: ‘After going to the doctors and having various tests my wife and I prepared ourselves for the worst and then they told me it was bladder cancer.
‘I had an operation to remove the tumour and now I am on a course of anti cancer drugs. We are now waiting to see if it has spread anywhere and the worst case scenario would be having to have chemotherapy, radiotherapy and then another operation.’
Stewart is still set to take on the bike ride this Sunday and has raised more than £2,600 for the fundraiser to build a new pool at West Hill Park School in Titchfield where the club is based.
The father-of-two said: ‘I have lost a few weeks of training but I am still going to take on the race although I may not get a personal best.
‘Before this I hadn’t ridden a bicycle in more than 55 years and I believe that getting back on my bike caused the tumour to move and the blood in the urine because I had no other symptoms.’
Stewart’s cancer was caught at Stage 1 and he wants to encourage people to talk about cancer more and to make sure they have check ups with their doctors.
He said: ‘I am lucky that this was caught so early but I think men and women as well don’t go to the doctors when they should which can make things worse.
‘I also wanted to be open about my diagnosis because I have known people to keep their diagnosis from their family and friends and we really just all need to be more open about the c word.’
To donate to Stewart’s bike ride visit kindlink.com/charity/fareham-nomads-swimming-club/1757/fundraising
To donate to Fareham Nomads swimming pool fundraiser visit kindlink.com/charity/fareham-nomads-swimming-club/1712/fundraising