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Belfast dinner lady battling cancer left 'speechless' after winning a car


Liz Borland with her new car and representatives from Action Cancer and Charles Hurst

Liz Borland with her new car and representatives from Action Cancer and Charles Hurst

Liz Borland with her new car and representatives from Action Cancer and Charles Hurst

A north Belfast woman battling ovarian cancer has been presented with a new car after a charity raffle.

Liz Borland was thrilled to win the £25,000 Toyota Corolla Hybrid after purchasing six tickets for £1 each.

The 59-year-old, from the Crumlin Road area, was handed the keys to her car yesterday by representatives from Action Cancer and Charles Hurst Toyota.

The St Vincent de Paul nursery dinner lady bought the ticket from a colleague selling them on behalf of the charity.

However, chance had a role in her win, with Liz ending up with one ticket too many.

She believes that the extra ticket was the one pulled out in the draw.

Liz had just received the devastating news that a tumour had been found in her ovaries when she was announced as the winner of the raffle live on the radio in December.

Since then she has undergone a hysterectomy and is due to receive the results of a biopsy on Monday.

Despite battling cancer, the win has brightened up Liz's outlook no end.

"I bought the tickets last year, but I can't remember yesterday. I totally forgot I had bought the tickets," she said.

"I filled in six tickets, but I only bought five, so I had to run back and pay the extra £1. I think that could have been the winning ticket.

"I've worked at the nursery for eight years, but I'm off after I had to get the hysterectomy.

"I had the surgery after they found a cyst in my right ovary. My left ovary was stuck to my other organs.

"They said there was a lot of debris on my organs, so they had to clear all of that away.

"I get the results of the biopsy on Monday.

"I've been very tired and I just want it to be over.

"The car has given me something to look forward to over the last few weeks."

While she does not have a driving licence, Liz's partner Eugene Christie plans to take the car out this weekend.

Liz promised neighbours and best friends Joan Belton and Annie Campbell that they could come along too.

After being handed the keys to the new white Toyota Corolla Hybrid yesterday, Liz said: "I'm delighted. I'm speechless. It's absolutely gorgeous."

Liz's neighbour Joan, who is also going through treatment for ovarian cancer, was over the moon for her friend."We are giving each other an awful lot of support," she said.

A total of £90,000 was raised for Action Cancer through the car raffle, which was run in association with Marks & Spencer and Charles Hurst Toyota.

Georgina Campbell from Action Cancer said she was delighted that Liz's ticket was pulled out in the draw and described her as a deserving winner.

"She is just the salt of the earth," she said.

"We are delighted because she's going through a difficult time at the minute health-wise.

"We hope the prognosis is good for her.

"She had just got the news she had a tumour on her ovaries before we made the call about the car raffle.

"She had bad news on one side and good news on the other, but she was just delighted.

"It got her through Christmas and she's going to be 60 next month, so it's an early birthday present as well."

Ross Graham from Charles Hurst Toyota congratulated Liz on her win.

"She was working when we made the call and she basically didn't believe us," he said.

"It was great news for her to get on the Friday before Christmas and she's very deserving of the win."

Belfast Telegraph