Cowplain pupils do Bush Tucker trial for teenager Beth

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CURRIED crickets, live mealworms and marshmallows smothered in Marmite were just some of the things pupils ate to raise money for charity.

The Cowplain School held a bush tucker trial to fundraise for the Piam Brown ward at Southampton General Hospital where fellow pupil Beth Tiller is getting treatment.

From left, Cowplain School Year 11 prefects Cerys Gamlin, Eleanor Weeks, Ellie Otton and Helena Tuch organised a Bush Tucker trial to raise money for charity

From left, Cowplain School Year 11 prefects Cerys Gamlin, Eleanor Weeks, Ellie Otton and Helena Tuch organised a Bush Tucker trial to raise money for charity

As reported in The News on Saturday, the 16-year-old is battling cancer and pupils at the school, off Hart Plain Avenue, wanted to do something to show their support.

Year 11 prefects organised Charity Week and, as part of that, invited students to eat a range of food to raise cash.

The blindfolded teenagers had to eat smelly cheese, gherkins with anchovies on top, marshmallows with Marmite as well as creepy crawlies.

Tom Mitchell, 15, said: ‘The bush tucker trial was disgusting.

The whole thing was worse than what I expected, but it was good knowing we were raising money for charity.

Tom Mitchell

‘I hate Marmite so that was definitely the worst for me, I couldn’t swallow it.

‘The whole thing was worse than what I expected, but it was good knowing we were raising money for charity.’

Fellow Year 11 pupil Jackson Chandler described the ordeal as ‘vile’ while Penny Hammond, 15, added: ‘The crickets were the worse because it was really dry and I swallowed it whole.’

Beth, from Denmead, is receiving treatment at Southampton General Hospital after being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma a year ago – a rare blood disease.

Pupil
 Penny Hammond eating crickets as part of the Bush Tucker Trial

Pupil Penny Hammond eating crickets as part of the Bush Tucker Trial

The courageous teenager and her loved ones thought she had beaten the condition after undergoing chemotherapy and a bone transplant in the summer.

But just weeks later they were dealt a blow by doctors with the heartbreaking news that the cancer had returned – and more aggressively than before her treatment.

Prefects Cerys Gamlin, Eleanor Weeks, Ellie Otton and Helena Tuch decided they wanted to do something to help Beth and organised the Charity Week, which included raffles and cake sales.

Ellie said: ‘Rather than just watch what was happening to Beth, we decided to raise money.

‘We wanted to be creative so chose the bush tucker trial and it went really well.’

Eleanor added: ‘We wanted to show we were trying to make a difference and help people on the Piam Brown ward.’