GLASSES were raised at midnight on Thursday when people across the country successfully completed the Dryathlon challenge to go the whole of January without touching a drop of booze to raise money for Cancer Research UK.

Among those was Andrea Woods, of Hornsbury Hill Farm, on the outskirts of Chard, who decided to take the plunge and give up alcohol for a month in memory of her good friend Mark Laken, of Chard, who died of cancer in December.

Andrea told the News that she liked to have a drink and so going a whole month without a “glass of something” was going to be difficult.

But by the end of January she had completed her mission and raised nearly £600 for charity.

“I am so chuffed and so grateful to everyone who has donated and supported me. I’d been hoping to raise £500 but the donation which put me over the target came from the father of a couple of children whose wife died from cancer last year – very poignant and made me cry buckets.”

Andrea, who said she was very proud to have successfully cracked the challenge, added: “This has been a heck of a journey for me – both in terms of my grief at losing my lovely friend Mary, and also finding out how hard it has been at times to go without an alcoholic drink.”

Cancer Research has said that it had 35,000 ‘dryathletes’ taking part in the challenge around the country and are hoping to have raised around £3-million in sponsorship.