Co-founder of national cancer charity passes away

Felicity Hilder
Felicity Hilder

A woman from Haddenham who co-founded the Aylesbury-based Lymphoma Association has died.

Felicity Hilder, 81, was part of the group who formally launched the Lymphoma Association (then known as the Hodgkin’s Disease Association) as a national charity in 1986.

Her husband Tim was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 1972,

Although Mr Hilder passed away 21 years ago, Mrs Hilder continued to be one of the charity’s trustees up until her death, taking it from a small operation based in their home in Haddenham, with £276 in the bank to a thriving organisation with about 30 staff, 200 volunteers and an annual income of around £1.2 million.

Mrs Hilder continued to attend fundraising events, Association conferences and support group meetings and in 2006 the charity recognised her contribution at their first Beacons of Hope awards.

In 2008, Mrs Hilder was honoured at a ceremony for charity workers across the county.

She was awarded an OBE in the 2012 New Year Honours list for charitable services, something she said she was honoured to receive, accepting it on behalf of her late husband Tim and herself.

Lymphoma Association chief executive Jonathan Pearce said: “Felicity’s passing is a loss for the whole lymphoma community – along with her husband, Tim, she was the rock on which so much of the charity’s information and support work was built.

“She inspired us all and will be greatly missed by everyone who knew her.

“Our thoughts are with her family and friends at this difficult time.”

Mrs Hilder is survived by her children, Jonathan, Martin and Anna and four grandchildren.

The family requests that donations, if desired, are sent to the Lymphoma Association c/o F J Wilson Funeral Directors, Greenway, Haddenham, Bucks HP7 8BJ.