John Burkhill Sheffield: Tears of joy as legendary fundraiser reaches £1m goal for Macmillan Cancer Support

He’s done it!
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Legendary fundraiser John ‘the man with the pram’ Burkhill has achieved his incredible goal of raising £1m for Macmillan Cancer Support, it has been announced today.

Sixteen years after he first started raising money for the charity so close to his heart, after losing his beloved wife June to cancer one year to the day after the unexpected death of their daughter, John finally reached his ‘magic million’ target this week.

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The inspirational 84-year-old, from Handsworth, initially planned to raise £250,000 when he began his fundraising efforts in 2007. But when he reached that goal in 2013, he set his sights even higher and now 10 years later his dream has finally come true.

He has done it! John Burkhill has achieved his goal of raising £1m pounds for Macmillan Cancer SupportHe has done it! John Burkhill has achieved his goal of raising £1m pounds for Macmillan Cancer Support
He has done it! John Burkhill has achieved his goal of raising £1m pounds for Macmillan Cancer Support

John is know across Sheffield for wearing his green wig while pushing his late daughter Karen’s pram around the city’s streets. He has also completed 1,038 races to raise the cash.

John, who said ‘I had tears in my eyes when I heard we’d reached the million’, added: “I’m honestly lost for words. I’m truly humbled by it all and blown away. People have said I’m a ‘hero’ and ‘legend’, but those people who have put money in the bucket and donated, they are the heroes.

“I can’t thank everyone enough for their support. They all might think I’m a bit daft, in the nicest possible way, but they got right behind what I’m trying to do for those affected by cancer.

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“It seemed an impossible dream with an old pram, and a crazy think for an old man to do but we’ve done it.”

John was chosen to receive the British Empire Medal for his services to charity in 2013 and a second bar for the medal was awarded to John in 2021. He also received the Douglas Macmillan award for his services to Macmillan Cancer Support in 2013 and was recognised with a British Citizens Award for services to charitable giving in January 2023.

Gemma Peters, Chief Executive of Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “John really has done whatever it takes for people living with cancer in trekking across the city most days, whatever the weather, and taking part in countless races across country pushing his late daughter’s pram. We thank you, John, from the bottom of our hearts.”

“It is difficult to put into words just how phenomenal this achievement is, as John embodies everything that is good in humanity. He is selfless beyond measure, having overcome such personal tragedy, and has put everybody else first before himself,” she added.

“We are immensely proud of John and so grateful for his incredible effort over the last 15 years to achieve his ambition of raising £1million for Macmillan Cancer Support,” she added.

Plans are currently being finalised for a celebration event to thank John for his incredible achievement.

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