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Red Arrows pilot completes UK-long run for Glaucoma

Red Arrows pilot completes UK-long run to raise awareness and funds for glaucoma research

A former Red Arrows pilot has run from Land’s End to John O’Groats to raise awareness of glaucoma and funds for research into the condition – with support from Specsavers.

Martin Higgins, who is known as Higgy, is passionate about highlighting awareness of glaucoma after his flying career was jeopardised after being diagnosed with the condition. Specsavers supported him with a £2,500 donation during the run, which has raised more than £19,000 so far for a research programme run by charity Glaucoma UK.

‘An estimated 700,000 people have glaucoma in the UK, but half of them don’t know it. Regular eye tests are crucial for early detection. It’s why I undertook this mission. I also did it for my sons so if they ever face a diagnosis of glaucoma, there will be greater awareness of the condition and more research into it,’ says Higgy.

‘I’m grateful for the support from Specsavers who are committed to caring for the nation’s eye health. Every donation makes a difference.’

Joanne Creighton, chief executive of Glaucoma UK, says that Higgy is an inspiration and has helped raise vital funds for research into glaucoma.

‘Only 1.3 per cent of health research funding in the UK is given to eye research. To tackle this, Glaucoma UK is introducing the Pitts Crick Research Fellowship, a post-doctoral research fellowship, in celebration of the charity’s 50th anniversary,’ she says.

Paul Morris, Specsavers director of professional advancement, says: ‘Congratulations to Higgy for completing this amazing challenge. He has raised an incredible amount of money and helped raise awareness of glaucoma, which together we can take on to prevent avoidable sight loss.’

 

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