Army Cadets raise £1k for cystic fibrosis charity

Boston Army Cadet Force with Holly (centre).
Boston Army Cadet Force with Holly (centre).

Boston army cadets have raised £500 for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust in support of one of their former members who suffers from the condition.

Holly Bysephipps, 20, from Billinghay, near Boston, joined the Boston Army Cadet Force when she was just 12.

Despite suffering from cystic fibrosis, a life-shortening genetic condition which affects the lungs, she played a full part in every activity, rising to the rank of full corporal by the age of 18.

“She didn’t let her condition stop her doing anything, whether it was rock-climbing, abseiling, caving, or simply day-to-day drill,” said Detachment Commander Sgt Mark Miller.

“In that respect she was an inspiration to us all, so when she asked us whether we would put on a fund-raiser for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust we were delighted to help.”

More than 20 cadets from 25 Platoon spent a weekend packing bags at Boston’s Asda supermarket in return for donations, with the resulting proceeds being split between the Trust and the Cadet Force.

Holly was also supported by her family, mum Sharon, dad Andrew, brothers and sisters Dana, Matthew, Kaylon and Lucy, and fiancee Alastair.

“I really enjoyed my time being a member of the Cadet Force, and knowing how supportive they had been, I wasn’t surprised they said “yes” as soon as I asked if they’d help raise funds for the Trust,” said Holly, who now works as an administration assistant.

She is hoping to continue her association with the Cadets by becoming an instructor.

Holly added: “I’m also hoping to do more fundraisers soon, though first I’ve got my wedding later this year to sort out!”

Cystic Fibrosis causes the internal organs, especially the lungs and digestive system, to become clogged with thick sticky mucus, resulting in chronic infections and inflammation of the lungs.

It wasn’t so very long ago that most people with the condition didn’t live beyond their 20th birthday, but now many survive into their 40s and beyond, and treatments are constantly improving.

Holly said: “The work done by the Cystic Fibrosis Trust makes an incredible difference to people like me, their families and their friends. The progress being made right now is amazing, and gives so much hope for the future.”

Last year saw the 50th anniversary of the Cystic Fibrosis Trust, which supports cutting-edge research to develop better treatments and, ultimately find a cure. It will also provide support to those with cystic fibrosis and their families and help the Trust to drive up standards in medical care.