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Burntwood schoolgirl to take part in muddy fundraiser after beating kidney cancer

A Burntwood schoolgirl who beat kidney cancer is to get caked in mud for a good cause – at a new event to raise funds for life-saving research.

Bethany Jennings, her sister Sophie and mum Becky getting ready for Cancer Research UK's Pretty Muddy Kids run at Weston Park

Bethany Jennings, her sister Sophie and mum Becky getting ready for Cancer Research UK’s Pretty Muddy Kids run at Weston Park

Bethany Jennings, 10, has appeared in a fun video to launch the first ever Race for Life Pretty Muddy Kids event at Weston Park on May 12, for Cancer Research UK.

The film shows Bethany with no hair during treatment in hospital before switching to images of her bouncing on a space hopper in the mud with flowing long hair and a big smile.

Bethany, who attends Ridgeway Primary School, said: “I want to help other people like me because I know what it’s like going through treatment. I had to have drugs that made me sick but I got better thanks to research.

“I’d encourage other people to join in Pretty Muddy because, even though you get dirty, it’s really fun and you get to raise money for a good cause.”

Bethany was diagnosed with a rare kidney cancer called a Wilm’s tumour in August 2015.

Bethany during her cancer treatment

Bethany during her cancer treatment

She endured five weeks of chemotherapy and lost her long hair before undergoing a five-and-a-half-hour operation to remove her kidney followed by another 26 weeks of chemotherapy.

Mum Becky, who will be joining Bethany and her 13-year-old sister Sophie at Pretty Muddy, said: “Everything went blank when Bethany was diagnosed.

“The cancer had taken over her whole kidney so it had to be removed but thankfully it hadn’t spread.

“Now she’s doing amazingly well and you wouldn’t believe she’d ever been poorly.

“We’re so grateful for the research and treatment that saved her life. We can’t wait to get stuck into the mud and raise money for Cancer Research UK.”

The Pretty Muddy Kids event will take place specially designed course, which features slides, scramble nets and space hoppers, takes place alongside the adults’ Pretty Muddy 5k and 10k challenges on the same day.

Paula Young, Cancer Research UK’s spokesperson for Staffordshire, said: “We’re delighted that Bethany and her family will be joining us as Weston Park’s first ever Pretty Muddy Kids event.

“The obstacle course promises plenty of fun, thrills and spills and we hope Bethany’s story will inspire other children to rally their friends, family and schoolmates to sign up and get messy for Cancer Research UK.

“Children can complete the Pretty Muddy Kids course at their own pace, climbing, jumping, walking and laughing their way around.

“Whether they’re bouncing on a space hopper or clambering under a cargo net, every muddy step they take will help bring forward the day when all cancers are cured.”

The entry fee for Pretty Muddy Kids is £10, and the event is open to boys and girls aged between five and 13. All children must be at least 1.2m tall and accompanied by a supervising adult, who has free entry to the event.

To enter Race for Life Pretty Muddy Kids visit or call 0300 123 0770.

People can also sponsor Bethany and Sophie online.

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