A support group for an incurable neurological condition put their best foot forward and raised £1500 to help support people living with the disease.

The Renfrewshire HD Support Group did their annual sponsored Walk of Hope at Erskine to raise funds for Scottish Huntington’s Association (SHA), the only charity in the country supporting families impacted by the degenerative neurological condition, Huntington’s disease (HD).

The 16 strong group ranged in age from two to over 70 all walking to raise money to fund the SHA’s team of HD specialists, its world leading youth support group and a financial wellbeing service.

HD is a complex neurological condition with symptoms that typically begin to develop between the ages of 30 and 50. It causes three main groups of symptoms: changes to thinking processes – a type of early onset dementia, loss of muscle control and involuntary movements which lead to loss of speech and swallow along with mental illness. Those impacted by HD may eventually lose the ability to walk, talk, eat, drink, make decisions or care for themselves requiring 24 hour care. It is also hereditary with each child of those diagnosed at 50% risk developing the disease. There is no cure.

It is estimated there are around 1100 people living with HD in Scotland and between 4000-6000 potentially at risk.

The group’s leader, Margaret Moncrieff, said:

‘My sister was diagnosed with the condition 12 years ago. HD is a genetic condition. My mother, who must have had the condition, did not live long enough for the physical symptoms to develop. My brother died at the age of 64 again before the physical symptoms showed. But he suffered for many years from paranoid schizophrenia (a common experience for HD sufferers). I have been immensely fortunate in that I do not have the condition. So, I try and do all I can do help the SHA who do such brilliant work to support those of us affected by HD.

‘The Group wishes to express its thanks to Accord for providing accommodation for meetings. We also wish to thank to all who supported our fundraising, including the members of Houston and Killellan Kirk and the staff and partners of Walker Laird, Solicitors. The funds raised will help the SHA to continue to provide a comprehensive support and advisory service to HD families.’

Find out more about the Scottish Huntington’s Association hdscotland.org.