Cancer Research UK and the Race for Life are keen to tell anyone entering the event that “this is beating cancer.” What they don’t share is the triple whammy of where the funds really go or don’t go, but then that might slow the gravy train and spoil the narrative.

Whammy number one is when you enter the Race for Life. You think ‘this is beating cancer’ because that is what Cancer Research UK have told you. What they don’t tell you, unless pressed, is that not a single penny of that entry fee supports research into cancer. It is all absorbed by sky high event costs. It is a lie by omission.

Whammy number two is when you purchase some Race for Life merchandise. You again think ‘this is beating cancer’ because that is the story Cancer Research UK are telling. And yet, CRUK’s own Annual Report tells us that no income from merchandising goes to research. Another lie by omission.

Whammy number three comes if and when you raise sponsorship for your Race for Life. You think ‘this is beating cancer’ because, again, that is what they tell you. But read that small print carefully; sponsorship does not go to research into cancer, it goes to Cancer Research UK, a subtle but important difference. Why? Because this means salaries, office costs, marketing, PR, and other costs come out of your fundraising before any finds it way to actual research.

How much finds it way to research? It is impossible to say. Entry fees and merchandise sales (along with other income streams) are not even included in the figures they use to calculate the percentage of their income which actually does go to research, artificially increasing the percentage they use.

We have asked on numerous occasions for clarification but, to date, have not received a reply.

So, when Cancer Research UK and the Race for Life tell you, ‘this is beating cancer’ take the statement with a large pinch of salt. None of the entry fee, none of the merchandising, and only an unclear percentage of sponsorship funds raised go to actual research into cancer. The rest? The gravy train has to be funded from somewhere. But they won’t tell you that.

In the Race 4 Truth, Cancer Research UK are lagging behind.


  1. john bicourt

    The more people who know the truth, the more who will refuse to hand over money to a bunch of conning cruks. …………and the more who avoid Race For Life events, the more likely the Charities Commission will step in to investigate .

    I would suggest all this on Race 4 Truth, gets sent to the Advertising Standards Authority because Race For Life and the way CRUK advertises itself is fraudulent and therefore criminal in dishonestly misleading people to part with their money.

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