Burnley's Barry Kilby cancer charity praised after 'saving life' of Portsmouth FC fan

Pompey fan Mick Turnbull would like to thannk Portsmouth FC and the Barry Kilby Prostate Cancer Appeal for the test he had at Fratton Park which could potentially save his life. Mr Turnbull is pictured outside the ground. Picture: Chris Moorhouse
Pompey fan Mick Turnbull would like to thannk Portsmouth FC and the Barry Kilby Prostate Cancer Appeal for the test he had at Fratton Park which could potentially save his life. Mr Turnbull is pictured outside the ground. Picture: Chris Moorhouse

A grandfather-of-fourteen has said he can't thank the Barry Kilby Prostate Cancer Appeal enough after one of their testing days helped diagnose his cancer.


Lifelong Portsmouth fan Mick Turnbull was one of more than 200 men tested at Fratton Park as part of one of the BKPCA's testing days, which are held at football grounds around the country.

Former Burnley FC chairman Barry Kilby

Former Burnley FC chairman Barry Kilby

Just 10 days after being tested Mick received an urgent note to see his GP, leading to a hospital referral and diagnosis confirmation.

The 61-year-old said: ‘I saw the test advertised at Fratton Park back in March and thought I had better go.

"If I am honest I probably would not have booked an appointment with the doctor but this was a quick and easy way to do it.

"After a few more tests and scans they told me I had prostate cancer. Naturally my family were, like me, devastated when I told them all but they’ve come to terms with it now and they’re all very supportive.

"I had to tell my brother Paul through tears but he got tested and he is fine thank goodness.

"But I am lucky that they have caught it so early and it has remained in my prostate so everyone at the hospital is positive.

"I have a colleague whose prostate cancer has spread into his bones and it shows you how it can affect anyone.

"I only had the symptom of going to the toilet quite often but I am diabetic so I just put it down to that.

"I can't thank the Barry Kilby Prostate Cancer appeal and Portsmouth Football Club enough, because if it hadn't of been for you I dread to think what the consequences would have been for me."

Portsmouth FC chief executive Mark Catlin, who was also tested, praised the "fantastic" Barry Kilby Appeal and urged all football clubs to look into having testing days at their grounds.

"I think the Barry Kilby Appeal is fantastic and there should be a mobile unit outside all football grounds to catch the footfall of fans," he said.

"The NHS provides tests for women but I think men need to get regular tests as well. Having units by football grounds and pubs would make it easy for us to get tested quickly.

"I think there is the other problem of men thinking a prostate cancer test can be uncomfortable but the blood test is so quick and it can really save your life."

The Barry Kilby Prostate Cancer Appeal was set up by the former Clarets chairman following his own diagnosis in 2012.

Since the first testing day held at Turf Moor in 2015, more than 2,500 men from the Burnley community have been tested.

At the last event in June - the biggest one yet - 555 men were tested with a massive £3,939 raised on the day towards the appeal, which requires approximately £7,000 per testing day.

Football clubs including Rochdale, Oldham, Blackburn, Preston, Ipswich, Charlton and Portsmouth have all now held testing days in conjunction with the BKPCA, which was granted charitable status earlier this year, and the team behind it are determined to see this number grow.

A spokesman for the BKPCA said: "We have currently tested over 4,500 men so far and are continuing to run our testing events at local sporting venues.

"On average, 10% of the men we test (we normally test around 350 men each event) will receive a Red result which means their PSA level is extremely high and have gone on to be referred to their GP and specialists to be treated for Prostate Cancer. Some of these men are as young as 51.

"This cancer is curable if it is caught early and there is no national screening for this yet which makes the work we are doing, lifesaving."