The weather might be getting colder, but supporters turned up the heat with a virtual competition that may leave some viewers blushing …
The Chilli Willy Competition saw participants put their green fingers to the test in memory of Amanda Pay, who passed away from a glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) brain tumour in April 2018.
The competition was dreamt up by Jannine Stoodley. She joined forces with Sandra, Amanda’s mum who is a keen gardener, to sell 90 seeds to friends and family who were then challenged to grow either the longest fruit or produce the largest crop of the cheeky chillies which resemble a certain part of the male anatomy.
Brain Tumour Research Celebrity Supporter and BBC TV’s Instant Gardener Danny Clarke stepped up to judge the competition. Like Amanda’s family, he knows the pain of a brain tumour diagnosis having lost his sister Margot McLellan to a GBM. Danny joined participants on a video call, where they proudly displayed their Chilly Willies to a captive audience.
The winners were Julie Stoodley (pictured), who produced a bumper crop of 34 fruit, and Vicky Warren, whose Chilli Willy measured a whopping six inches.
As well as providing some much-needed light relief during lockdown with updates and photos shared in a group chat, the challenge also raised £900 for Brain Tumour Research.
To get an eyeful of some of the Chilli Willy plants, you can visit Jannine’s JustGiving page. You can also make a donation via this page too.
If you found this story interesting or helpful, sign up to our weekly e-news and keep up to date with all the latest from Brain Tumour Research.