ELEANOR Thomson from Guiseley has overcome cancer and is gearing up for the Edinburgh Marathon this weekend.

It’s not the first race, however, that Eleanor will have taken part in this month – after having been elected as Ward Councillor for Guiseley and Rawdon earlier in May.

Eleanor is raising funds for Macmillan Cancer Support, having received help from the charity throughout her cancer diagnosis in 2018 after finding a lump in her breast.

She said: “The lump was a benign cyst, but some changes showed up on the mammogram. A biopsy confirmed that it was DCIS (Ductal carcinoma in situ) which was a bit of a shock, because you can't feel it at that point. Thankfully it was at an early stage and non-invasive.

“I was told I’d need a mastectomy and it was not expected at all, I thought it'll just be a little lump that need to deal with. They told me it was 15 millimetres, but there was actually a bigger area that was affected. So, I didn't really have a choice at that point. And my mum had had breast cancer 15 years previously. She was there with me when I got the news.”

Eleanor’s family have certainly had it tough with cancer, as her husband overcame testicular cancer whilst Eleanor was pregnant.

Having been a keen runner since her school days, Eleanor says hitting the tarmac has been crucial in helping her deal with cancer – physically and mentally – including for surgery following her cancer diagnosis.

She said: “I had reconstructive surgery about four days after I raced in the Leeds 10k, which meant I was in peak physical condition and then recovered really well. But it just gave me the headspace to be able to cope and to process how I was feeling and deal with this body that kept changing.”

Having used Macmillan Cancer Support’s information booklets and also attending the Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre in Leeds, Eleanor explained how important Macmillan were and why she is fundraising for the charity:

“I think it's important to know somebody is there because the hotline (Macmillan Support Line) at Shipley is just down the road from us and various people around here work there. It's just knowing that somebody you can call if you need help with benefits or information about treatment. Or there's a booklet that'll cover pretty much what you need or that there'll be somebody who can point you in the right direction. It's just knowing somebody is there when you need them.”

Macmillan Cancer Support’s Challenge Events Manager, Eloise Jones, said: “We are so pleased Eleanor decided to give back to Macmillan having been helped through her diagnosis. Her commitment and determination to fundraise by partaking in the Edinburgh marathon after all she has been through is staggering, and her efforts will go a long way to help Macmillan continue to be there for people living with cancer, whatever it takes.”

To donate to Eleanor’s page, visit: www.justgiving.com/nelnanandnora