Celebrity watch

Television actor Martin Clunes is a Macmillan Cancer Support ambassador.

Martin Clunes
Martin Clunes

Martin Clunes, star of sitcom Men Behaving Badly and comedy drama Doc Martin, has been an ambassador for Macmillan Cancer Support for 18 months.

"My family, like many in the UK, knows first hand the devastating impact a cancer diagnosis can have," says Clunes. "That's why I support Macmillan's work to help the increasing number of people who live with cancer."

Catherine Aird, celebrity officer at Macmillan, says: "His dad died from lung cancer when Martin was eight, so it's always been a cause close to his heart. Martin's support has grown since he first got involved. He visits our services regularly and has a really good understanding of what we do - he's an absolute star."

Clunes is fronting Macmillan's largest national fundraising event, the World's Biggest Coffee Morning, for the second year running. This year's event, which has a fundraising target of £7m, takes place on 28 September.

Donna Air, the actor, television presenter and 'organo-mum', delivered a letter from the Soil Association to Number 10 last week, calling on the Prime Minister to publicly support planet-friendly organic food as a means of tackling climate change.

The letter, the delivery of which was timed to mark the end of the organic food charity's Organic Fortnight campaign, said: "The Soil Association isn't demanding any handouts or calling for additional legislation. It is simply asking that the Government encourages the public to take the positive action of choosing planet-friendly organic food.

"Recent Government proposals to combat obesity and poor diet suggest your determination to improve the health of the nation. If the Government is truly concerned about the health of the next generation, then, like the nation's mums, it is time to speak out about the benefits of organic food and farming."

JK and Joel, the hosts of Radio 1's Chart Show, have lent their support to Jeans for Genes Day, which takes place this year on 5 October. Other celebrity supporters of the event, which raises money to help children with genetic disorders, include the actors Emilia Fox and Jason Donovan. The appeal encourages people to ditch their school uniforms or business suits and wear jeans for a day in exchange for making donations to Jeans for Genes.

Duncan Bannatyne, the entrepreneur and star of BBC2 television show Dragons' Den, is supporting Breast Cancer Campaign's Wear It Pink day next month. "All people have to do is wear an item of pink and donate £2 to the appeal," he says. "I'll be wearing pink on 26 October."

Julia Bradbury, presenter of BBC1 consumer rights programme Watchdog, is backing the British Heart Foundation's The Beat campaign to encourage people to be more physically active and help prevent heart disease.The campaign features a television advert that will run for three weeks from 17 September.

Seamus Heaney, the Irish poet and winner of the Nobel Prize for literature, has written a poem that has been inscribed on the plinth of the Listening Lady sculpture, unveiled at Marie Curie Cancer Care's recently redeveloped Belfast hospice. The sculpture is pictured below with its creator, David Annand. The poem reads: "Still yourself, take time, be at rest. Enter the circle, unalone, a guest." Heaney says: "My words were inspired by the word 'hospice', which comes from the Latin 'hospes', meaning both 'a host' and 'a guest'. The words allude to the two-way trust that is fundamental to Marie Curie Cancer Care."

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