A 57-YEAR-OLD man from Horton underwent pioneering cancer treatment abroad, before returning to running the very next day.

Will Gray, 57, was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2013 after visiting his GP over a stomach complaint.

He was advised to ‘wait and see what happened’, which he said felt like ‘playing Russian Roulette’ with his health.

Instead the fitness fanatic researched alternative treatments online and spent £18,000 having proton beam therapy in the Czech Republic.

With his cancer now in remission, he is championing the groundbreaking technology that is heralded as having fewer side effects than traditional radiotherapy.

Will runs and rows six days a week and boasts a half marathon personal best of one hour 21 minutes 19 seconds.

After the treatment Will was back out on the roads with his club. the Hogweed Trotters, within 24 hours.

"When the original results came through I felt I was putting myself on the slip road to a motorway of worry and as far as I could see there were no exits," the 57-year-old said.

Will rows or runs six times a week

"I had two more tests then a biopsy, after which the consultant told me I had a tumour.

"I had done my research so I knew there was no benign method of treatment in the UK.

Will, a father of four, was determined to tackle his situation head-on. He was made aware of the existence of proton beam therapy quite by chance.

His life changed when he found a newspaper article from a man called Joe Tuftnell, the first man from the UK to travel to Prague and be treated with proton beam therapy.

Proton therapy differs from tradition radiotherapy by targeting a specific area with a pencil beam laser, meaning other surrounding organs aren't affected by the treatment.

The find came at an important time for Will, as he had just received the news that his tumour had spread.

"I contacted the Proton Therapy Center in Prague, where Joe had been treated, and it moved very quickly from there,” Will said.

"It was extraordinary. I told people it was a ‘radiation vacation’," he said about his treatment in Prague.

"Once the treatment had finished I flew back to the UK and I was back out with my running club the following day.

"At last proton beam therapy is getting the recognition it deserves.

"I appreciate, due to factors such as cost, that it isn’t something everyone can take up, but I do think the NHS should make patients aware of it as a treatment option.”