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Bucks Fizz star Cheryl Baker - and Nobby Clark - founder of the Bay City Rollers - are helping two Suffolk showbiz friends raise funds in this year’s Bury St Edmunds Race For Life

Bucks Fizz star Cheryl Baker - and the founder of one of the most successful teen idol bands of all time - are helping two Suffolk showbiz friends to raise funds for Cancer Research UK.

In the 1990’s Martin Weavers, now 63, along with close Patrick Mortimer, now 62, – formed the comedy act Martin & Moore, appearing on primetime TV shows like Des O'Connor, Michael Barrymore, and Lovejoy.

The comedy duo, who performed a comedy Blues Brothers routine, have also supported each other after Martin was diagnosed with Stage 4 Lung Cancer two years ago - and Patrick suffered two heart attacks.

Cheryl, Martin, Patrick
Cheryl, Martin, Patrick

Now the life-long friends, have received celebrity backing to help raise vital funds for Cancer Research UK in the Bury St Edmunds Race For Life on June 9.

The two friends set up a podcast, called Who's Tom & Dick - Cockney rhyming slang for: Who's Sick - after they both suffered from ill health.

Each week they interview guests and celebrities and talk about health issues in a positive way. Recent guests include comedian Joe Pasquale and former World Snooker Champion Cliff Thorburn.

Now, 1981 Eurovision winner and TV presenter Cheryl Baker, who was recently on the show has wished Martin and Patrick the best of luck for their fundraising endeavours and sent a good luck video from her back garden.

Martin said: “The response to our podcast and Race For Life has just been phenomenal and we are absolutely delighted to have Cheryl’s backing. It’s so important we raise awareness and vital funds to help save lives.”

Martin, from Wortham, said if he had been diagnosed 20 years ago, the outlook for his rare type of cancer would not have been good but now he’s looking at years, rather than months.

He added: “I’m so grateful for the care and treatment I have received and that’s all down to fundraising for more research and allowing scientists, doctors and nurses to work towards better prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer.”

Martin, Patrick
Martin, Patrick

Along with Cheryl Baker, singing sensation Nobby Clark from the Bay City Rollers has also sent a good luck message in support of Martin and Patrick, after hearing about their podcast and recent health issues.

It was in early 2022 when Martin, a semi-professional football referee, was refereeing a Sudbury Town FC match when he knew something wasn’t right.

He became breathless and in February that year, he was told he had stage 4 adenocarcinoma non-small cell lung cancer, which is treatable but not curable.

It will be an emotional moment when Martin, and Patrick, are at the finish line together.

The pair have been chosen to help launch the event and by sharing their story inspire people to visit raceforlife.org and sign up.

Patrick, 62, a former comedy hypnotist said: “I Race for Life – or in my case walk – for Martin, who is doing amazingly well after everything he has gone through.

“We’ve been friends for more than 30 years and that means standing by him through the good and bad times. When we’re together, we just can’t stop joking and laughing. I’m really inspired by him.”

Martin, who is married to Lynnie, 53, said he had his wife to thank for all her help and support when he was at his worst, added: “My tumour is on the outer surface of the lung, so was inoperable.

Nobby and Martin
Nobby and Martin

“After many months in and out of hospital I was one of the first people in Bury St Edmunds to receive a new drug, Lorlatinib and now my tumour has now shrunk to a tiny speck.

“I owe my life to my oncologist, Dr Daniel Patterson. I’m now back on track and hopefully it’s being kept at bay. Now Dr Patterson is in control of my cancer, rather than my cancer being in control of me.”

Martin was told there is a 1:6,000 chance of getting his form of the disease. Adenocarcinoma non-small cell lung (NSCLC) develops from cells that make mucus. It is more often found in the outer area of the lung. Although the main cause is smoking, this type of NSCLC is more common in non-smokers like Martin, who has never smoked.

Martin said: “It will feel like a magical moment when I cross the finish line at Race for Life with Patrick.

Joe Pasquale, Martin, Patrick
Joe Pasquale, Martin, Patrick

“We formed a successful comedy duo in the ‘80s and had some incredible moments together. Then Patrick started his own business and I moved to Benidorm where I sang lead in a Bay City Rollers’ tribute band, Rollermaniacs, where we built up a strong following. When I decided to move back to the UK, I formed The Rollermaniacs UK, but because of my illness, I’ve recently had to give up singing and that’s when Patrick suggested starting our own podcast.

“Patrick has been there for me throughout my life and was at the hospital when we thought I was on my ‘death bed’. He’s helped me get through a lot.”

Patrick Keely , Cancer Research UK’s spokesperson in the East, said: “We are grateful to Martin and Patrick for their support and know their story will make an impact on everyone who hears it.

“No matter how cancer affects us, life is worth racing for. Sadly nearly one in two of us will get cancer in our lifetime. Race for Life has the power not only to transform lives, but to save them. We’re proud that Race for Life has already helped double survival rates in the UK.

“We’d love for as many people as possible across the country to join us at Race for Life. There is an event for everyone and we mean everyone. Walk, jog, run or take on the course however it suits best. It’s a chance to feel the power of moving together with fellow Race for Lifers and to treasure that moment of crossing the finish line.”

Since it began in 1994, more than 10 million people have taken part in Race for Life.

Money raised has helped develop radiotherapy which benefits more than 130,000 people with cancer in the UK every year.