The Beginning

The Derbyshire Branch of the Motor Neurone Disease Association was officially formed in October 1986, following the death of Ken Rawson an uncle of two of the founder members of the Branch.

In June of the same year they had decided to organise a sponsored walk to raise some money and awareness of the disease. Ken who had been a semi-professional footballer, playing for Notts County from 1954 –1960 had been diagnosed with MND some four years earlier whilst living in Canada. The family had made the decision to return to the UK the previous year, where they could be near their many friends and family. Unfortunately just days before the walk was to take place, on June 27th 1986 Ken sadly died. But the family were determined to carry on and the walk took place in Shipley Park on July 6th and was fantastically well supported, raising £2000.

In July a Garden Party was held raising a further £2000. By this time they had attracted interest from the MND Association National Office who requested a meeting with them. A small committee was formed and they were asked to consider forming a local branch as Derbyshire was not represented by the Association at all. On October 2nd 1986 a public meeting was held and doctors, consultants, local authority, and many other people in the public eye were invited. The meeting was extremely well attended, and the film ‘The Best Kept Secret’ was shown.

Within a few weeks the Branch which was then called The Derby & Amber Valley Support Group was ratified and the inaugural meeting was held on October 22nd 1986.

The Branch continued to receive tremendous support with many fund raising activities taking place, and the first years total income was £7,225.

In March 1989 the name of the Branch was changed to the Derbyshire Branch, because although help and support had always been given to the whole county, it was felt the name may put people off contacting the Branch if they lived outside the area.

The Derbyshire Branch of the MND Association became the Derbyshire MND Support Group at an Extraordinary General Meeting held on Wednesday 22 January. 2014. However our aims still remain the same, to serve all those in the area who are affected by Motor Neurone Disease

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