A VILLAGE fundraising group is launching a last minute push to raise more money for the a hospital cancer centre.

The Coggeshall Fundraising Group for the Cancer Centre at Colchester Hospital wants to raise £25,000.

So far more than £17,000 has been collected and it is hoped a sponsored walk together with a head shaving challenge will further boost the fundraising.

The Cancer Centre Campaign aims to raise £3.25 million to bring all cancer services together at the hospital, including chemotherapy and haematology as well as support and holistic therapies.

A deadline of February has been set as the appeal faces losing a £1 million donation if it does not reach the target by that date.

Volunteer Sarah Cooper is organising the 3.6 mile walk around Coggeshall, which will start at the Co-op on Coggeshall Recreation Ground on East Street.

She said: "Living in and around Coggeshall, at least one person we all know will likely face treatment for cancer at this facility.

"We set up the Coggeshall Funding Raising Group on May 15 last year to raise £25,000 towards this. We are raising money for the charity as it asked all the communities to come together to raise the total by February 2018.

"The money will allow them to start building a holistic, purpose built centre to house chemotherapy, haematology and complementary treatments above the new radiotherapy centre at Colchester General Hospital."

Volunteer Julie Standen is also organising a head shave to raise money.

She said: "I had pledged to shave my hair off when we reached 80 per cent of our goal which was £16,000.

"We have now reached £17,294.00 which is 86 per cent of our goal.

"I am really happy to shave my hair off, lots of people have said it’s very brave but I’m lucky enough to have the choice.

"Those facing the prospect of chemo don’t have that choice, often losing not only all their hair but because chemotherapy attacks all fast growing cells, they often lose their finger and toe nails too.

"The second I shave my hair off it will also start to regrow, but this isn’t the case with chemotherapy patients."

Head of fundraising for CoHoC, Caroline Bates, said: "There are several village fundraising efforts for the centre including Coggeshall, Tiptree, Wivenhoe and various others who are all doing fantastic things to raise money for the centre.

"I am absolutely delighted to support communities around Coggeshall, who have done a huge amount and have set themselves an ambitious target."

The walk will take place on Sunday January 7 at 1pm.