Girls done good: Oakmere employees smash virtual challenge for DKMS

Six employees from Northwich–based firm Oakmere Wealth Management smashed their planned 874 mile lockdown lifesavers challenge for DKMS.


Oakmere Wealth Management Managing Director, Carla Brown and five colleagues: Louise Gilbody, Jackie Phillips, Jacky Roberts, Rachel Whittaker and Penny Williams, completed 1,046.14 miles (172 extra miles) for their virtual Land’s End to John O’ Groats charity challenge.

Blood cancer hits close to home

Carla first heard of DKMS after her friend and client Andy died from Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2017, following a two year fight with the disease. Blood cancer would once again rear its head when Operations Manager Louise Gilbody’s father-in-Law Martin, became ill with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL).

Photo: Oakmere Wealth Management Managing Director Carla Brown

Photo: Oakmere Wealth Management Managing Director Carla Brown

Carla said: “Blood cancer hit close to home twice. Firstly, Andy’s death touched me because he was a friend and it was so untimely, then when Louise shared the news about her father-in-law and his battle, you realise that blood cancer doesn’t discriminate.

During a Friday evening Zoom call the team and I decided we wanted to do something for people like Andy and Martin and countless others with blood cancer. The Covid-19 lockdown was challenging for us, but even more difficult for the 30,000 people diagnosed with blood cancer each year in the UK."

On par with walking from Manchester to Marseille

Carla added: “The six of us agreed to split the 874 miles between the two furthest extremities in Great Britain, with a goal to urge people to register with DKMS and donate urgent funds to them. It was hard work, but I’m so thrilled that we kept on going and we raised over £2,080.”

Instead of spanning the breadth of the UK, the ladies feat was roughly the same distance between Manchester and Marseille, in the South of France (1,046.1 miles).

How you can help

It costs £40 to register one potential blood stem cell donor, and DKMS relies on monetary donations to help cover this cost. Whilst the NHS is very supportive, it falls to charities like DKMS to reach out to potential lifesavers.

If you are aged between 17-55 and in good general health, please register for your home swab kit online.

Also, there’s still time for you to support Oakmere Wealth Management’s JustGiving page at