Rowan Parkes
Posted by
Rowan Parkes

Wickes hop-up Kilimanjaro: a step for every blood cancer patient

Rowan Parkes
Posted by
Rowan Parkes
05 Jun 2015

Climbing the highest free standing mountain on earth isn't easy, but neither is beating blood cancer. In October 2009 Wickes boss, Jeremy Bird, and a team of fundraisers reached the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest mountain. The event was a huge success, taking Wickes fundraising total to £800,000 to change the world for blood cancer patients. A colossal achievement don't you think?

Since then, Wickes have continued their partnership for a further six years, taking part in activities from lying in baths full of baked beans to trekking across Alaska. With their latest in-store fundraising challenge, they're well on their way to the £5 million mark!

Last month, in stores all around the country, staff built wooden stands from Wickes materials, fitted with a Wickes hop-up. Each store was set the challenge of 'hopping up' 38,000 steps (the amount it would take to surmount the 5,895m mountain). Staff volunteers clipped on their pedometers and hopped to it. Each step was taken for one of the 38,000 patients newly diagnosed with a blood cancer in the UK each year.

Did they do it? You bet. 31 stores completed the 38,000 step challenge. An extra special well done goes to Burgess Hill, who climbed an incredible 107,751 steps. So far, Wickes have collectively raised over £35,000 to beat blood cancer, and we’re still counting!

Rowan Parkes, Wickes Account Manager at Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research said “As always Wickes stores threw their hearts and souls into the activity last weekend. We saw everything from Wombles to fire fighters getting involved to help every store reach the summit. A huge thank you to everyone at Wickes for their continued support and their dedication to our to vision of a world free from blood cancer.

Since our partnership began in 2006, survival rates for blood cancer as a whole have risen from 52% to 60% – and survival rates  for some blood cancers  have risen by as much as 11%. Our partnership is a force to be reckoned with.

Colin Contini, chair of Wickes charity committee said “Hop Up Kilimanjaro was another superb Wickes all-store event and really captured the imagination of our colleagues and customers alike. It was brilliant to see so many people getting involved and having loads of fun whilst raising massive amounts of money for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research”

If you'd like to get take steps to help us finish the job, you can donate at


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Well done Wickes, thanks for doing so much to help us beat blood cancer!