Broadcasting legend Jeff Stelling took on his latest marathon Football March for Prostate Cancer UK, from Wembley to Wycombe Wanderers, in honour of the late Bill Turnbull at the weekend.
The former Sky Sports football anchor, who sported Prostate Cancer UK’s iconic ‘Man of Men’ badge on Soccer Saturday each and every week, has helped raise around £1.5m for the leading men’s health charity, and immeasurable awareness about a disease that kills one man every 45 minutes, on a series of epic marathon marches since 2016.
On September 17th 2023 Stelling spearheaded a special one-day fundraising march, his 34th for the charity, from Wembley to Wycombe in tribute to fellow broadcaster Turnbull, who sadly died of prostate cancer in August last year.
Stelling set off alongside more than 360 walkers from the home of football en route to Buckinghamshire and the picturesque Adams Park, home of the League One Chairboys.
He was also joined by ex-Scotland, Celtic and Arsenal striker Charlie Nicholas and former player, manager and broadcaster Chris Kamara – both of whom Jeff worked with for many years on Soccer Saturday. Former Crystal Palace and Sheffield Wednesday striker Mark Bright also walked while former Wycombe and current Queens Park Rangers manager Gareth Ainsworth joined the march later in the day. Will Turnbull, son of Bill, also walked the whole day.
The event was sponsored by GenesisCare, a specialist cancer care provider with 14 treatment centres throughout the UK. Working with Prostate Cancer UK they will both promote the importance of early diagnosis of prostate cancer, giving more options for advanced treatments such as radiotherapy, and better life outcomes.
Following stints in regional radio, both Stelling and Turnbull cut their reporting teeth at LBC before going onto become household names in the broadcasting field, Bill, the doyen of breakfast television Monday to Friday and Jeff as the face of Soccer Saturday for more than two decades.
Speaking about the event, Stelling said: “Bill was a legendary broadcaster and most importantly a superb human being. But his life was cruelly cut short by prostate cancer.
“Although our paths crossed fleetingly, we shared so many similar values and we trod similar paths in our careers. We also embraced true underdog spirit in the teams we passionately followed, me with Hartlepool United and Bill with Wycombe Wanderers.
“Bill’s support for not just Prostate Cancer UK but for everyone affected by this awful disease, was incredible. Those people he touched with his story, and those lives he saved by going public, that’s the legacy he leaves.
“Sadly for Bill he was diagnosed too late. His subsequent mission was to inform men and their families about this disease and ensure others don’t go through what him and his family did. Walking to Wycombe in honour of him is the perfect way to continue his legacy, and for those other men lost to this disease.”
Wycombe Wanderers is the 106th UK football club visited by Jeff since departing his beloved Hartlepool United on his first march in 2016. The trek took him past 890 miles in the process.