As the Forever Friends Appeal at the Royal United Hospital in Bath prepares for its fundraising Walk of Life next year, the organisers have announced that this year’s event raised £32,000 for the hospital’s new cancer centre.

The annual walk from Devizes to Bath along the towpath of the Kennet and Avon Canal is becoming increasingly popular and the organisers are hoping for a record entry in next year’s event, setting off from Devizes Wharf in May.

The walk was instituted in memory of Vanessa Kyte, a mum from Rudge, near Frome, who lost her battle with cancer five years ago. After she was diagnosed, she fundraised tirelessly for the Forever Friends Appeal. Over the years she raised more than £100,000 for local and national charities.

Her sister, Nicola Noble, said: “After Ness had both her breasts removed, she started running.

“Raising money for a charity she believed in is what she was about.”

May 2012 saw the most successful Walk of Life to date, with over 210 supporters taking on either the full 21-mile walk from Devizes to Bath, the 12-mile morning stint from Devizes to Bradford on Avon or the nine-mile afternoon section from Bradford on Avon to Bath.

Tim Hobbs, head of fundraising at the Forever Friends Appeal, said: “On the five-year anniversary of Vanessa’s death, the Forever Friends Appeal charity would like to announce that an impressive £32,000 has been raised from the 2012 Walk of Life, which will go towards the RUH Cancer Care Campaign, to help build a new cancer centre at the RUH.”

He added: “Vanessa, along with Nic and the rest of her family, always wanted us to be focused on cancer care as our primary campaign and I believe she would very much approve of our vision for the new Cancer Centre and the way our fundraising activity is developing to achieve it.”

The Forever Friends Appeal also have silver bond places available in the 2013 Bath Half Marathon on Sunday, March 3. To sign up for one of these places, visit or call (01225) 825823.