A KEEN north Shropshire golfer is looking to use the sport to raise vital funds for a charity close to his heart.

Graham Wood is hoping to raise £500 for Prostate Cancer UK in order to qualify for the Prostate Cancer UK Championships 2019.

The Henlle Park Golf Club member was last year’s senior captain and chose to raise funds for the charity, and has continued his efforts into this year.

The 79-year-old recently completed a 63-mile bike ride from Manchester to Blackpool as part of his fundraising, taking his total raised for the year up to £700 with £200 coming from his home village of Pentre, and the remainder coming from members at Henlle.

Graham is hoping to help this year’s senior captain, Chris Andrews, with his charity work.

Being familiar with the effects prostate cancer can have, Graham is hoping his work can raise awareness as well as funds about the illness.

He said: “I’m recovering from it myself.

“I know people who have been through it before and having been through it myself, it makes me want to raise money for the cause as much as I can.

“When I was captain last year, whenever we had matches against local teams, I’d have leaflets to give out with advice to help people.

“This year, I want to help our captain Chris to raise money again.

“This is the same reason why I took part in the bike ride I have just completed.

“My son-in-law has done it a fair few times, so I thought I’d give it a go.”

Graham hopes to take part in the tournament in Cheshire – one of the five venues at which the championships are held each year.

The championships are also held in Middlesex, Belfast, Birmingham and Glasgow.

Golf has been close to Graham’s heart for some time since he was diagnosed with prostate cancer.

He believes it has helped him through difficult times in many ways, and hopes to continue playing for as long as he can.

“Golf has helped me massively to deal with the illness and other things over the past few years,” he added.

“Having the members at the club has been a huge help – I lost my wife 10 years ago, so I live on my own now.

“It does help a lot going to golf as a social thing as well as exercise.

“I go to golf around twice a week – it’s been really important in helping me to stay active and keep busy.

“I turn 80 in December and I hope to continue playing for as long as possible.”

Anyone wishing to donate money to Graham’s fundraising can do so by dropping money off at Henlle Park Golf Club in his name, or by calling him on 01691 777796.