• Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

Former footballer fighting cancer to walk from Witney Town to Oxford City grounds to help fund research


Aug 13, 2022

A former Oxford City footballer who 'is running out of options' is setting off on a 14-mile walk from Witney to his old club to raise awareness of cancer.

When he gets to Oxford, Duncan Barney – who has pledged to spend whatever time he has left urging people to get health checks – will be greeted by players past and present and Oxford City Football Club sporting director Justin Merritt.

Duncan, 63, and wife Ange, want to raise as much money for Cancer Research UK as possible and to fill the route with supporters.

In the evening there will be a bar, meal and raffle in the clubhouse in Marston.

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Duncan, who lives in Witney, has been fighting cancer for three-and-a-half years although he was initially given six months.

Oxford Mail:

He said: "I've done lots and lots of chemo. It really isn't about my outcome now, I have decided to embrace it. It's become my obsession, to raise awareness that early detection of health issues truly saves lives.

"I'm running out of options but I have had the chance to deal with it and so have my family. The last three years have been harder for my wife than for me. And whenever I've had an appointment or had anything done I've worn the pink trainers my son sent me from the States."

The walk will start as close to Witney Town’s old Marriotts Close Ground, which is now M&S, as possible and end at the new Oxford City Ground at Court Farm Marston.

Duncan said: "I have chosen this walk because I loved playing for both clubs and most importantly it’s a safe walking route.

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"Justin Merritt, the co-owner of Oxford City, has very kindly donated the use of the clubhouse for the evening. There will be food available on the night, a raffle and auction.

"It’s our chance to give something back for all the incredible work my oncology team and our NHS have done in keeping me alive and to help others beat this horrible disease."

He added: "I realise 14 miles is quite a long walk – especially for me – but I wanted to challenge myself so I am arranging a quick stop for refreshments at The Evenlode Eynsham before walking on to Wolvecote roundabout.

"The walk will start at 11.30am and we are allowing six hours to walk it with pit stops so it will be a very relaxed walk."

Duncan and Ange have received over 200 messages of support so far and already nearly raised their target amount on their Just Giving page.

Asking people to support the charity, the appeal ends simply: "The fight continues ❤️❤️"

To take part, go to https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/duncan-barney