Housebuilder names street in Emmer Green in memory of schoolboy who died of brain cancer

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Vistry Group is to name a street in Reading in memory of schoolboy George Fox, who died of a brain tumour.

The housebuilder is incorporating the name Fox Crescent within its Bovis Homes location at Emmer Green Drive in Reading, in honour of the 13-year-old – who lost his battle with glioblastoma in April 2022.

Vistry decided to pay its respects to the teenager, from Barton-le-Clay in Bedfordshire, after being told of his brave fight with cancer by Helen Cullip, who is managing director of Bracknell Glass in Reading – a sub-contractor which supplies doors and windows to the housebuilder – and who got in touch with George’s mum Louise Fox after reading his story online.

Louise said: “It was such a lovely surprise to find out that there is to be a street named after our little boy. I would like to thank Helen for the idea and Vistry for making it happen.

“George, who was a kind, loving soul, would think having a street named after him was really funny and I know it would bring a smile to his face. It was great to visit Emmer Green Drive, to meet the Vistry team and to see exactly where Fox Crescent will be.

“For us, as a family, it is nice to know that there is a place that carries the name of our beloved son and will remind people of the courage he showed through all the surgery and chemotherapy and other treatments he endured without complaining.”

George was diagnosed in April 2021 at Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge. He went through surgeries, chemotherapy and radiotherapy in his battle against cancer and his parents began an online appeal to fund treatment abroad, raising more than £490,000.

Unfortunately, George’s condition deteriorated on the flight out to Los Angeles and he was unable to take part in the US clinical trial. His family found alternative treatment, such as proton beam therapy and options in Germany, but it was to no avail.
Helen said: “I thought it would be lovely if Vistry could possibly name one of the streets at one of its developments in memory of George. I got in touch with Steve Rhodes, technical manager at Vistry and he was very positive and said he would try to make it happen.

“Once it had been confirmed that the council had agreed to the use of the name Fox Crescent at Emmer Green Drive, I contacted Louise and told her. She was absolutely delighted and I can’t thank Vistry enough for this gesture which I know means so much to George’s family.”

After George died, Louise helped form a group – called Angel Mums – with seven other mothers who have lost children to brain tumours, to raise funds for charities dedicated to promoting research and providing treatment associated with brain cancer.

The group raised more than £75,000 for brain cancer charity the Tessa Jowell Foundation, by taking part in skydive from 13,000 feet in October 2023.

Louise and her family also got support from Tom Parker, the singer of The Wanted, before he died of a brain tumour aged 33 in March 2022. Popstar Tom posted encouraging messages to George on his social media and sent him a Christmas video.

Alix Laflin, marketing manager for Vistry Thames Valley, said: “It was utterly heartbreaking to hear about how George had fought so bravely against brain cancer until his short life was so tragically cut short.

“We were fully supportive of Helen’s idea that George’s immense courage should be celebrated by naming a street in his honour at one of our developments and our suggestion of Fox Crescent at Emmer Green Drive has been given the green light by Reading Borough Council.

“We are more than happy to be able to do our bit to ensure that the name of George Fox lives on and that his family know that there is a street in Reading that honours his incredible bravery by carrying his name.”

Vistry Group comprises Bovis Homes, Linden Homes and Countryside Homes. To find out more about Emmer Green Drive, visit bovishomes.co.uk.

To find out more about the Angel Mums, or find a link to donate to the skydive appeal, visit https://www.instagram.com/angelmumsinsta

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