Sunderland landmarks lit orange to raise awareness of young William's rare condition

Landmarks across Sunderland will be lit orange as part of the Go Bright campaign to raise awareness of muscular dystrophy, a rare muscle weakening disease.

Friday, 12th February 2021, 5:32 pm
Updated Friday, 12th February 2021, 6:05 pm
Sunderland landmarks are being lit orange to raise awareness of muscular dystrophy. William Calvert was diagnosed in 2015.

The city’s landmarks will be lit orange this evening, Friday, February 12 as part of a month long campaign by Muscular Dystrophy UK to ‘go Bright for the Fight’ in making ‘muscles matter’ and raising awareness of the condition.

David Cooke organised the Sunderland light up for his nephew William Calvert, 8, from Sunderland after he was diagnosed with duchenne muscular dystrophy in 2015.

Penshaw Monument, Hylton Castle, Fulwell Mill, the lighthouse at Cliffe Park in Seaburn, Keel Square and High Street West are among those that will be lit up orange tonight.

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William Calvert in 2016 when he was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy at three-years-old.

Mr Cooke hopes the event will shine a light on the condition and help raise awareness and funding for those suffering from illness.

The campaign was set up by the Muscular Dystrophy UK charity to encourage people to wear bright clothes and take part in Go Bright activities during February in aid of finding better treatments and cures for muscle-wasting conditions.

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David Cooke said: “I wanted to organise it to help raise awareness of muscular dystrophy and get it out there as some people may not even know what it is.

Dave Cook with his nephew William Calvert, eight. Son's of Eden band member Ben Potts (back)

"Will was absolutely over the moon when I told him what I had planned, he’s really looking forward to seeing the landmarks lit up.”

Susanne Driffield, Muscular Dystrophy UK Regional development manager said: “We can’t thank David Cooke and Kim Inglis enough for arranging to have all the landmarks across Sunderland bathed in orange light on Friday, to mark our Go bright for the Fight campaign. It is really incredible.

“The Calvert family, who launched their Family Fund with Muscular Dystrophy UK called: I’m In For Will four years ago, has so far raised £62,546. They are an amazing group to work with and incredibly popular in our community.”

Will’s Aunt, Angela Crossley Turnbull has been fundraising through lockdown for I’m In For Will, she said: “Will is my nephew and that’s why I do it, to prolong his life and to ensure it is as comfortable as possible. No child deserves not to feel like a child.”

Sunderland’s landmarks will be lit orange from dusk tonight.

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