Former Clarets chairman Barry Kilby's appeal is saving lives

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Burnley Football Club’s popular former chairman Barry Kilby, who has been bravely fighting cancer, believes his prostate cancer appeal has helped to save lives in the area.

Mr Kilby, who retired from Turf Moor in 2012 after 13 years at the helm, was diagnosed with prostate cancer at the time, has issued a rallying call to men to be aware of their health.

Dave Walmsley and Kevin Coyne won a competition to have a tour around Burnley's new training ground at Gawthorpe in connection with Barry Kilby's appeal

Dave Walmsley and Kevin Coyne won a competition to have a tour around Burnley's new training ground at Gawthorpe in connection with Barry Kilby's appeal

The businessman, who still has check-ups, has so far raised £20,000 for his Barry Kilby Prostate Cancer Appeal.

He spoke to the Burnley Express at the Clarets’ new Gawthorpe training facility.

“I am really pleased with how the appeal has gone so far,” he said.

“We had a prostate check-up at Turf Moor on the premise that more men were likely to go there than their doctor. Just short of 1,000 men were checked with about 10% found to have some form of prostate cancer. We’ve definitely helped to save lives through this.

“I believe it’s very important to raise awareness of the disease in men. We try to put on a brave face and avoid going to the doctor if we are ill, but I would urge anyone who thinks something may be wrong to get themselves checked out.

“If the cancer is detected early, it can make a big difference to survival. I’m proof of that.”

Collections buckets went around Turf Moor for Burnley’s final home game of the season against West Ham United, while fans and friends have also done their bit for the appeal by undertaking several challenges in recent weeks.

These include an epic bicycle ride from Burnley to Bournemouth and a sponsored walk from Great Harwood to Burnley.

Barry has also even penned a short story about a gay footballer “As Good As Some” which is available to buy on Amazon, with all proceeds going to the appeal.

He added: “I’ve really enjoyed writing this story and I’m currently working on a second one about match-fixing. It’s entirely fictional!”

More information on the appeal can be found on its Facebook page.