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Andy Layton James vows to fight prostate cancer


By Alistair Whitfield

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A well-known Moray singer has vowed to raise as much money as he can while he fights cancer.

Taxi driver Scotty Russell hands over a cheque to Andy.
Taxi driver Scotty Russell hands over a cheque to Andy.

Andy Layton James was diagnosed a couple of months ago.

The 62-year-old, who previously lived in Findochty but now resides in New Elgin, said: "I went for a blood test for a completely unrelated thing.

"During that the doctor asked me, 'are you feeling okay generally?'

"I replied, 'absolutely great' – which was the truth.

"He asked, 'so, no problems at all?'

"I said, 'well, there's just one thing, I'm getting up to go to the bathroom three or four times a night'.

"He said, 'that's not right. I'll book you in for tests'."

Andy got the results not long afterwards.

He was told he has prostate cancer. Fortunately, however, it is in the early stages and can be treated.

Andy said: "It was a complete fluke that they discovered there was anything wrong with me.

"As quite a few people in Moray will know, I experienced a difficult incident several years ago when I was physically attacked.

"But things like that in life – they toughen you up.

"I might be a poof but I'm not a soft touch.

"I'm going to fight this.

"And regardless of whether the cancer claims my life or not, at least I will have done my very best to raise money for a worthy cause."

Andy is now on hormone tablets to reduce his testosterone levels and to try reduce the cancer in size.

Then from January, he is due to begin a course of radiotherapy which could last up to eight weeks.

In the meantime, he is planning a fundraising drive for UCAN cancer centre which is based in Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.

He says: "I'm raising money and I'm also aiming to raise awareness locally.

"I want more men to go have tests for prostrate cancer.

"As many as one in three will get it, but there is a reluctance to have the check-ups.

"There is an 80 per cent survival rate, but the doctors need to start treating it before it's too late."

Andy has been a professional entertainer for the past 22 years.

During his career, he's sung at parties held by the footballers Vinnie Jones and Paul Gascoigne as well as the actresses Gillian Taylforth and Linda Lussardi.

He's also appeared in several soaps, including Emmerdale and Holyoaks.

In Coronation Street he played a police sergeant who arrested Gail Platt and release Ken Barlow's son from jail.

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