Barnoldswick author in Movember challenge

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A BARNOLDSWICK author has embraced facial fuzz for a month, taking part in the global Movember fund-raising campaign.

Cultivating the perfect moustache for all of November, Antony Johnston (39) is one of hundreds of thousands of “Mo bros” around the world who has signed up to help raise awareness of the often ignored issue of cancers affecting men.

Antony, who writes graphic novels and video games, said it is the first time he has taken part in the whiskers challenge.

He said: “Because of my work, I have a lot of friends all over the world, including the USA and Australia where Movember started. I noticed last year there was all this on Twitter about people doing it. I thought it was an in-joke at first then realised it was for charity.

“I have lost several friends and family to cancer and one of my oldest friends was diagnosed with testicular cancer when he was barely in his 20s, which seemed far too young for something like that to happen.”

Funds raised through sponsorship in the UK support the Prostate Cancer Charity and the Institute of Cancer Research. They work together to ensure Movember money is directed towards a broad range of programmes of awareness, education and research.

Antony collected £120 when he attended a comic convention in Leeds at the weekend, and is also fund-raising through the official Movember website.

He said: “I think it is especially important to raise awareness with men. You see all these statistics about how much less likely they are to visit a GP than women.

“If there is a problem or concern, men traditionally don’t bother to do anything about it and shrug it off. But sometimes you aren’t going to just be fine.

“You learn the hard way when you start to lose friends and family. And it is important to realise there are some cancers that only affect men. If they don’t keep an eye on themselves, nobody else will.”

Donations can be made through Antony’s page at http://mobro.co/antonyjohnston