Peers visit the Parkinson's UK labs

Peers from the House of Lords visited our Parkinson's UK funded research labs at the University College London’s Institute of Neurology yesterday (23 May).

The Peers are all members of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Parkinson's.

The APPG helps to raise awareness of Parkinson's issues in parliament with MPs, peers and other policy makers.

As well as a tour of the lab, they met researchers and discussed the huge range of research being undertaken into Parkinson's at UCL.

One of our researchers, Professor Nick Wood, talked about how the latest gene discoveries are allowing his team to piece together the steps in the pathways that lead to Parkinson's.

Other presentations included research into how useful of treatments such as deep brain stimulation and posture correction approaches are for people with Parkinson's.

Baroness Gale (pictured above with a researcher at the labs), chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Parkinson’s said:

"This was a fascinating opportunity for members of the Parliamentary Group to see some of the research that’s being done into the causes and treatments for Parkinson’s. 

"This gave me an insight into how much progress has been made, but also what still needs to be discovered."

Carrying the torch for Parkinson's UK

The Olympic Flame arrives in the UK today and we wanted to congratulate the fantastic torchbearers who've been selected because of their work for Parkinson's UK and supporting people with Parkinson's.

There are 8,000 torchbearers who will carry the Olympic Flame across the UK. They have been selected for being inspirational figures in their local community.

Congratulations to:
  • David Denmead (pictured right), carrying the Flame on 19 May (Day 1) through Stenalees
  • Janet McCulley, carrying the Flame on 19 May (Day 1) through St Austell
  • Lilian Quinn, carrying the Flame on 19 May (Day 1) through Lanivet
  • Jeff Tottle, carrying the Flame on 21 May (Day 3) through Porlock
  • Jeremy Adams, carrying the Flame on 21 May (Day 3) through Washford
  • Norma Ashton, carrying the Flame on 24 June (Day 37) through Marsh
  • Michael Wise, carrying the Flame on 12 July (Day 55) through Fontmell Magna
  • Sue Blunden, carrying the Flame on 16 July (Day 59) through North Bersted
Carrying the Olympic torch is a fantastic honour and we are proud to see a selection of our dedicated volunteers have been chosen to carry this icon on its journey around the UK.

We rely on our network of committed volunteers to help us with our vital work supporting people with Parkinson's and their families and carers. Congratulations to everyone who has been chosen.

Do you know any other Parkinson's UK volunteers who’ve been chosen to carry the Olympic Flame? Tell us about them by emailing

Paul pedals for Parkinson's: 3,106 miles down, 7,144 to go

Paul Smith's China challenge begins
This week one of our fundraisers Paul Smith, 36, from Forest Row, East Sussex, completed the first 3,106 miles of his epic cycling challenge from China to the UK.

We want to congratulate Paul on this fantastic achievement and wish him the very best of luck for the remainder of his amazing 10,250-mile challenge, which is raising money to support our vital work.

Paul began his journey on 6 March from Fujian, China and is due to arrive at the finish line in East Sussex at the beginning of October. He is cycling for his Dad, Mike, 65, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 1994.

The next leg of Paul’s challenge will see him cycle into Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Czech Republic, Germany and France, before arriving back home. 

Sponsor Paul online and follow his progress on his blog or via Twitter.

Are you inspired by Paul’s story? Why not join us one of our overseas events later this year. Our intrepid fundraisers will be trekking across Peru and Jordan, as well as cycling from Vietnam to Cambodia.

Or if you’d prefer like to stay a little closer to home, join us on our Pedal for Parkinson’s cycling events across the UK this summer.

We couldn’t do our vital work without the support of all of our fantastic fundraisers – from cycling across China, to cake sales in Coventry. Every single penny raised helps us in our work to find a cure and improve life for everyone affected by Parkinson’s.

Tell us your 2012 fundraising stories. Email us on