Presidents & Patrons
We are extremely fortunate to receive fantastic support from our wonderful Patrons who launch Appeals, attend events, create publicity, help raise our profile, and who give their time freely, making an invaluable contribution to Velindre.
A sporting legend! Jonathan began supporting Velindre back in 2007 first as a Patron and for over ten years as President. Jonathan’s commitment to Velindre has been truly extraordinary – running his annual golf day for over twelve years, encouraging others to become involved, and highlighting Velindre at every opportunity. Jonathan celebrated his 50th birthday in style by leading Velindre’s first ever overseas bike ride challenge, the Captains California Bike Ride in September 2012, then led our East Coast Bike Ride from Boston to New York in 2014, and our West Coast Ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles in 2018. His wonderful support of Velindre was recognized with an OBE in 2015. At the end of 2020 Jonathan has helped raise £34 million pounds for Velindre.
People don't appreciate the work Velindre does until the unfortunate time comes and you need it, then you realise how good a place it is and how hard people work there. They are amazing.
Alan, Maggie and Hywel – The Petersons’ were the first group to be appointed as Family Ambassadors for Velindre in 2012 and have been terrific supporters for many years; Hywel’s appointment as a Velindre Vice President recognises this exceptional commitment and enthusiasm. Highly respected by Velindre Patrons, many of whom he has worked closely with over the years Hywel has a terrific reputation both in Wales and nationally is a wonderful addition to the Velindre Family.
We are very fortunate at Velindre Cancer Centre to have had Roy as our Vice President for over twenty and everyone at Velindre is extremely grateful for his continued support. A consummate communicator, in 1999 Roy received a prestigious Sony Award which has helped to cement his place as one of Wales’s most popular broadcasters. In 2001 Roy was awarded an OBE for his charity work.
Gareth’s announcement that he had become a Velindre Patron sent Velindre’s social media into meltdown! Gareth is Wales’ highest goal scorer and has won Welsh Footballer of the Year a record 6 times. In 2013 after being named Premier League Player of the Year Gareth was transferred to Real Madrid for E100m and has since won the Champions League four times and La Liga twice.
Ospreys, Wales and British Lions legend Shane Williams has been a long term Velindre supporter, firstly as an Ambassador and since 2016 as a highly committed Patron. He threw himself into fundraising and took part in various challenges such as marathons, triathlons and bike rides and he attended various dinners and lunches, launched appeals, donated copious amounts of signed memorabilia and helped with many media activities. In 2015 Shane led our Patagonia Trek celebrating the 150th anniversary of the Welsh settlers and in 2017, ahead of the British Lions Tour of New Zealand, he led our Ride With The Pride 400km bike ride from Auckland to Matama. In 2018 he took part in our West Coast Bike Ride from Sam Francisco to LA and led Velindre Team in the Tour of Pembroke Bike Ride in 2018 & 2019. His next challenge will be in 2021 when he will lead our 3 Canyons Bike Ride.
Velindre President Jonathan Davies was delighted to announce at the Best of Wales Gala Ball that Geraint Thomas had accepted our invitation to become a Velindre Patron. Geraint is the first and only Welshman to win the Tour De France, and rides for UCI WorldTeam Team Ineos, Wales and Great Britain, competing on both track and road. On the track, he has won three World Championships and two Olympic gold medals. His incredible success saw him become BBC Sports Personality of the year in 2018. Watch Geraint's video on why he became a Velindre Patron!
Sam has captained his country a record 49 times, is the youngest ever World Cup captain, has won 2 Six Nations titles and a Grand Slam. Sam is an undefeated British & Irish Lions Test captain. Sam, his family and friends are terrific supporters of Velindre. He regularly attends events, launches appeals, hosts fundraising Balls and Lunches and visits patients at Velindre. Since retirement Sam will be leading his first Velindre overseas challenge, the 3 Canyons bike ride in September 2021.
In September 2013 Rhod led his first Velindre event with the Trek of a Lifetime to the Roof of Africa, Kilimanjaro and released a brilliant TV programme called Rhod v Kilimanjaro. November 2015 saw Rhod lead a trek to Patagonia to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Welsh settlers arriving in South America, and in 2017 along with 50 other trekkers conquered a remote Inca trail culminating at Machu Picchu in Peru. In February 2019 Rhod spearheaded a trek along the Helambu trail in Nepal. As well as raising hundreds of thousands of pounds through treks, there has been a series of memorable comedy evenings, with Rhod's Hoof Cancer Right where it Hurts shows attracting the UK's finest comedians including Greg Davies, Michael McIntyre and John Bishop. www.hoofcancer.co.uk
Martyn started his glittering rugby career at Pontypridd and has since achieved legendary status by being capped 100 times for Wales., and completing three Lions tours. For many years Martyn led the very popular annual Martyn Williams Walks attracting hundreds of walkers. After completing the Captains California Bike Ride in 2012, Martyn led the Kilimanjaro Trek of a Lifetime in 2013. He has since taken part in the East Coast Bike Ride in 2014, led our Ride the Rockies Bike Ride from Canmore to Jasper in 2016 and our West Coast Bike Ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles in 2018
Emmy award winning actor Matthew Rhys has supported Velindre for a number of years. He provided a wonderful Christmas Eve staff for patients (and staff!) when he read from his own copy of Dylan Thomas’s A Child's Christmas in Wales in 2015? Matthew has provided valuable insight into our American bike rides and also supplied great pieces for many of Rhod Gilberts Hoof Cancer Quiz nights.
Carolyn has written and presented television and radio series on the arts, popular culture, consumer issues, women’s issues, history and sport for Radio 4, BBC Wales and ITV Wales, and has her insightful column for Media Wales is essential reading. Carolyn first became an Ambassador for Velindre Fundraising in 2013 after her mother was treated at Velindre and has continued to support us ever since. An experienced and accomplished after dinner speaker and compere, Carolyn has spoken at a variety of Velindre fundraising events, and joined us on our 150th anniversary trek in Patagonia in November 2015 raising almost £30,000 in sponsorship.
A dual international, Brynmor uniquely played three times for Wales, and also appeared in three Test matches for the British & Irish Lions,. Brynmor is a fluent Welsh-speaker and sought after commentator and studio analyst. A highly respected businessman with a wealth of contacts, Brynmor is also an excellent after dinner speaker, and has provided great entertainment at many dinners in aid of Velindre.
A former Wales & British Lions Rugby captain, Mike has been an avid supporter of Velindre since 2009 when he signed up to the Captains Climb up Mount Kilimanjaro in 2010. He has gone on to complete several other overseas events including the Captains California Bike Ride in 2012 and the Captains East Coast Bike Ride in 2014. Mike has also supported many other Velindre events, launched appeals and organised two hugely successful fundraising balls. Velindre was also his chosen charity for his book ‘The Mike Hall Story’