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Gallant swim bid to fight disease

PUBLISHED: 15:45 26 March 2008 | UPDATED: 09:35 23 August 2010

Gravesend
19-03-08
Vic Woolley will do a swim to raise money for Parkinson's Disease
Vic with his wife June

Gravesend 19-03-08 Vic Woolley will do a swim to raise money for Parkinson's Disease Vic with his wife June

A 76-YEAR-OLD man with Parkinson s is staging a sponsored swim to raise money for the charity that helps sufferers of the neurological disease. Vic Woolley, of Horns Cross, Greenhithe, hopes to swim 20 lengths of Cygnets Leisure Centre swimming pool, Old

A 76-YEAR-OLD man with Parkinson's is staging a sponsored swim to raise money for the charity that helps sufferers of the neurological disease.

Vic Woolley, of Horns Cross, Greenhithe, hopes to swim 20 lengths of Cygnets Leisure Centre swimming pool, Old Perry Street, Northfleet, on April 8 and raise £1,000.

His bid, which will raise money for the Parkinson's Disease Society, coincides with an awareness week running from April 7 to April 11 highlighting the incurable disease.

The condition occurs as a result of a loss of nerve cells in part of the brain and affects movements such as walking and talking.

Mr Woolley, who also had a triple heart bypass 10 years ago and was diagnosed with Parkinson's last year, said: "It was a shock for both me and my wife when I was diagnosed, but I am getting used to it now.

"At the moment it causes weakness and a tremor in my left arm and leg. It is also starting to affect my memory.

"I am not a particularly strong swimmer and I am asthmatic, and when I started swimming I had to stop after just one lap. Now I can stay in the pool for just over an hour and manage about 20 lengths at a push.

"If I stay in the pool too long though I start to lose all coordination, and have to get out."

Mr Woolley is now a member of the Dartford and Bexley branch of the Parkinson's Disease Society. They meet monthly to provide support for fellow sufferers.

He added: "I am going to try and go as far as I can for my sponsored swim, I am aiming for 20 but, hopefully, I can go that little bit further.

"The money will be donated to the Parkinson's Disease Soci-ety and will go towards the cost of training and providing specialist nurses.

"They are so important in providing the expertise that is needed to help manage the condition, it affects each Parkinson's patient in a different way."

To sponsor Mr Woolley, visit www.justgiving.com/vicwoolley1

For more information or support if you suffer from the disease visit: www.parkinsons.org

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