Christmas comes early for Banchory woman

Photo (l to r) Corinne Blair, mini winner; Susan Crighton, CLAN fundraising manager and Mark Tandy, TAQA Bratani. Christmas has come early this year for Banchory resident Corinne Blair, after she scooped a brand new car in an annual fundraiser for CLAN Cancer Support.

Corinne is the lucky recipient of a brand new Mini First after her number was pulled out of a raffle that was drawn at CLAN Cancer Support’s Christmas Cracker in November.

The annual raffle forms a pivotal part of the charity’s fundraising campaign and this year saw over £18,000 raised thanks to the generosity of the north-east public and energy company TAQA Bratani, whose sponsorship of the car ensured that every penny goes towards CLAN’s provision of free support services for anyone affected by cancer.

For Corinne, her festive celebrations have started in earnest after being told of her win the morning after the draw.

She said: “When Susan from CLAN phoned me up on the morning after the draw to tell me that I had won the car, I was in a state of shock – I really couldn’t believe that I had been so lucky to win.

“I bought my ticket earlier on this year at the corporate highland games in Hazlehead Park at which CLAN were exhibiting at and I really didn’t think anything else of it until I heard the wonderful news.

“My entire family are thrilled to bits, especially my 14 year-old twins who have told me to keep the car until they are old enough to drive!”

The win is also a reminder of her family’s own experiences with cancer, after her father Ted was given four months to live on New Year’s Eve in 2006 after secondary cancer in his spine was found after initially being diagnosed with prostate cancer. Now seven years on, Ted has recovered from his initial diagnosis and continues to go from strength-to-strength.

Corinne added: “My father was diagnosed with cancer in 2006 and it really was a tough time for all the family as we were told he had only four months to live. Seven years on and he is still with us and getting stronger every day which is fantastic when you consider we were preparing for the worst.

“At the time we didn’t think of CLAN, but after reading up on the charity after my win, it has become obvious that my father and my family would have benefitted from some of the free services that it offers – it’s great to know that we have that sort of facility right on our doorstep.”

CLAN’s annual raffle has formed part of a year-long programme that has helped mark the charity’s 30th year in operation and Susan Crighton, CLAN’s fundraising manager has paid tribute to those who have helped make this specific fundraising drive a success.

She said: “It’s always a great morning at work when you get to phone the winner of the draw and tell them that they have won a brand new car and I’d like to thank Corinne and the 18,000 plus others who purchased tickets and helped make this fundraising campaign such a success.

“This is the seventh time we’ve held the raffle and year-on-year we are completely bowled over by the level of support shown towards the campaign and the fantastic amount raised has most definitely allowed us to finish 2013 in style.”

CLAN Cancer Support is an independent charity which provides comfort support and information, free of charge, for anyone, of any age, affected by any type of cancer. CLAN aims to support people to reduce anxiety, stress and to increase their ability to cope with the effects of a serious illness. Based in Aberdeen, the charity covers the whole of north-east Scotland, Moray, Orkney and Shetland. CLAN has a presence in Ballater, Banchory, Elgin, Inverurie, Fraserburgh, Peterhead, Stonehaven, Kirkwall and Lerwick.

For further information about CLAN Cancer Support please call (01224) 647 000 or visit

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