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Colleagues raise £150,000 in memory of brain tumour victim Darel

PUBLISHED: 07:00 05 September 2019

Darel's parents and Clarion staff with the Wall of Hope. Picture: Clarion

Darel's parents and Clarion staff with the Wall of Hope. Picture: Clarion

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A hugely popular Beckenham man struck down by a brain tumour is being remembered by his employers.

Staff at Clarion Housing Group said Darel Bryan was a treasured colleague and now they are visiting a Brain Tumour Research Centre of Excellence to place commemorative tiles in his memory.

Clarion employee Darel was 33 when, in December 2014, he was diagnosed with aglioblastoma multiforme, known as GBM.

This is a highly aggressive type of tumour and tragically housing officer Darel died just 15 months later.

That loss galvanised his colleagues into action and since his death they have raised more than £150,000 for the fundraising group set up in his memory.

Darel grew up in Beckenham and in 2008 joined Affinity Sutton in Bromley, which is now Clarion, as a housing officer. He was following in the footsteps of his mother Sara Bryan, who is a customer service adviser at Clarion's Bromley office.

Following his death, Darel's partner of 12 years, Natalie Overs, and his family set up the Darel Bryan Foundation - a fundraising group under the umbrella of Brain Tumour Research.

Led by a team of charity champions, staff at Clarion have helped to raise money through a number of fundraising activities including a ball, quiz nights, dress down days and football tournaments.

On August 27 a group from Clarion was invited to Queen Mary University of London to meet researchers and tour the Centre of Excellence lab.

The team, along with Darel's parents Sara and Clifford Bryan, also placed tiles on the Wall of Hope, where each tile represents the £2,740 it costs for just one day of research into the disease.

Clarion chief executive Clare Miller, said: "Touring the lab was fascinating but it also opened my eyes to the fact that only one per cent of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to brain tumours. Considering it's the biggest cancer killer in children and adults under the age of 40, this isn't right."

To make a donation in Darel's memory, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/TheDarelBryanFoundation

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