Teesside comedy favourite Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown paid a visit to The James Cook University Hospital to donate £5,000 raised from the proceeds of merchandise sales.
It was a welcome return for Chubby, who has made previous generous gifts to the hospital’s ‘Star fund’ which helps pay for advancements in radiotherapy and oncology for cancer patients and their families.
Speaking at the hospital’s specialist cancer treatment centre The Endeavour Unit, Roy, 72, said: “I always think when people come through this door, they’re in a very dark place. The doctors, nurses and everyone else here try their very best to help, and while they’re here, patients feel better. Centres like this, they’re like Disneyland for grown-ups. You come here and you can forget about your troubles for the day.
“The love and care amazes me. Nothing is too much trouble for them.”
Speaking of his own 2002 battle with throat cancer, which was treated at James Cook, Roy admitted: “I came here expecting to die. I really did. I remember once chatting with a lovely young woman while we were being treated. I found out a few weeks later that she passed away. It was heartbreaking, just heartbreaking.
“I couldn’t speak for six months, which is hard for a stand-up comedian! Sometimes people would recognise me in the street or supermarket and they’d think I was being snooty when I couldn’t reply to them asking how I was doing!
“The people who work here do the impossible. You come here feeling you have no hope but you can leave full of hope. We’re very lucky to have them on our doorstep.”