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Cancer Research UK aims for positive end to ‘bad day’

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by Cancer Research UK | News

8 July 2009

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New ad campaign for Cancer Research UK features cancer patients and survivors

THIS month, Cancer Research UK is set to unveil a brand new national television ad campaign to raise awareness and increase donations for vital research into cancer.

For the first time in one of Cancer Research UK’s national television advertisements, the thought provoking ‘Bad Day’ campaign features cancer survivors and patients and focuses on the emotions and realities of being given a cancer diagnosis. Speaking direct to camera and engaging the audience on a personal level, each of the participants helps deliver a message which both recognises the progress made in cancer treatments but also highlights that there is still a long way to go to beat cancer.

Thanks to the continued support of the public, Cancer Research UK has been at the forefront of advances in the prevention and treatment of cancer and is making a significant impact to the lives of all those affected by the disease. In the UK around 300,000 people are diagnosed with cancer every year and it is responsible for one in four of all deaths. Cancer Research UK is dedicated to reducing the number of deaths from cancer and, thanks to the charity’s work; more people are beating cancer than ever before.

Carolan Davidge, director of brand and PR at Cancer Research UK, said: “The phrase ‘I’ve had a really bad day’ is often thrown around, but our new ad campaign really puts things in perspective. Every one of the inspirational people featured in the ad is either a cancer survivor or cancer patient, and each of them has experienced first hand the truly ‘bad day’ which is played out in the ad. We have chosen real people over actors to emphasise that cancer is not something which happens to ‘other people’, it is around us every day whether that be personally or through family and friends.

“The sad fact about cancer is that one in three of us will be diagnosed at some point in our lives. Cancer Research UK is leading the way in finding new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer and is dedicated to beating the disease. Cancer survival rates have doubled in the last thirty years and our work has been at the heart of that progress.”

Testicular cancer survivor, Darren Couchman, age 36 from Essex, is one of the people who appears in the ad. Darren said: “Thanks to the work of Cancer Research UK, a cancer diagnosis does not necessarily equal a death sentence and I am living proof. I was eager to be involved in this new ad campaign because I, and thousands more like me, have benefitted from the progress made by Cancer Research UK’s scientists, doctors and nurses and I wanted to help raise awareness and encourage public support so they can continue their lifesaving work to beat cancer.”

Davidge added: “We want to show people that the work of our researchers and scientists is behind the amazing advances in cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment. Looking specifically at breast cancer, death rates have fallen by almost a fifth in the last ten years. Similarly, 95 per cent of men with testicular cancer are now being successfully treated.

“However, although great advances have been made in recent years, there is still a long way to go to beat cancer. All of Cancer Research UK’s funding comes from the efforts and generosity of the public and at this time, more than ever, we need people to support our work.”

Delivered in tandem with an online campaign, including information on the homepage of the Cancer Research UK website, and poster and radio advertisements, the television ad premieres on Sunday 12th July and will be aired for seven weeks.

To find out more about all the different ways you can support Cancer Research UK, including making a regular monthly donation, visit


For further information or high-res images please contact the Cancer Research UK press office:

Or, out of hours, call 07050 264 059

**Interviews with individual case studies are available on request