A CHARD man is set to take on a 100 mile cycle ride to celebrate surviving a decade since his pancreatic cancer battle.

Just one per cent of people who are diagnosed with this specific form of the disease survive for 10 years.

Among them is Chard grandad Paul Matherick, who is marking the achievement by taking part in the Prudential Ride London next week.

Paul was diagnosed 11 years ago after a friend noticed that he looked yellow – a common symptom of pancreatic cancer.

He was sent to hospital for tests and it was confirmed he had pancreatic cancer but was fortunate to be able to have the Whipple operation, currently the only cure for the disease.

The surgery was successful but has left Paul with nerve damage, chronic pain syndrome and diabetes.

Paul said: “I have wanted to help others learn about pancreatic cancer and to give support to others that come into contact with it.

“I have kept promising to myself I will do a charity event to raise awareness about it – and now that I have reached 50 years old ‘it’s now or never’.

“I hope this inspirational 100 mile cycle ride will help raise funds for pancreatic cancer action, returning some of the help that they have given me over the years.

“I want my experience, my survival and the publicity that this challenge affords to provide a message of hope.”

“Awareness is critical, as is early diagnosis.

“I have been fortunate and wish to turn that good fortune into assistance for others.”

Pancreatic cancer is the UK’s fifth biggest cancer killer.

The survival rate is under seven per cent which is the lowest of any cancer.

Annie Whillians, event co-ordinator at Pancreatic Cancer Action said: “Paul’s journey has been incredibly inspiring to everyone here at PCA.

“It makes a change hearing a success story and we wish him all the luck in the world with his Prudential Ride London challenge, we are sure his determination will get him through.”