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The Society in the News

Here you will find recent news stories about that have featured The Society and all the work we do. 

Terrington School’s £3,000 gift

Scarborough News - 8th July

A “Spellafun,” sweet stalls and a cake bake sale are just a handful of the events that have helped pupils from Terrington Hall School to raise £3,108.48 for The Encephalitis Society.


Nominated as its charity of the year, the school wanted to show its support for the Society and its work as the world-leading resource for those affected by Encephalitis and their families. 

Other fundraisers which added to the grand total were the annual Spring Fair, retiring collections from the pre-prep’s Nativity play, annual carol concert and performance of a Christmas Carol.

Head teacher Stephen Mulryne, said: “The children have taken this charity to heart and I am terrifically proud of their efforts to find ways of raising money to help support the families of those affected by Encephalitis.”

Phillippa Chapman, the society’s Director of Operations, said: “We’re extremely thankful to the children and staff at Terrington Hall School for their kind and generous fundraising for The Encephalitis Society. We receive no Government funding so the support we receive from them means a great deal. The children have been fantastic and seem so engaged which is really brilliant.”

Read the story in the Scarborough News

Read the Story in the Malton Mercury

Former MP Anne McIntosh’s parting gift

Malton Mercury - 6th July

A farewell lunch to thank Anne McIntosh for all her hard work as the MP for Thirsk, Malton and Filey has also resulted in a windfall for three worthy causes in Ryedale.


Anne donated £600 to The Encephalitis Society which has its headquarters on Castlegate, Malton, presenting the cheque to Joan Lawrence, the Mayor of Malton.

“I have been hugely impressed by the work locally of the Encephalitis Society which is the national headquarters and support team for sufferers throughout the country,” said Miss McIntosh.

You can read about the story in the Malton Mercury

Pendle Hippodrome Theatre hosts a charity event

Pendle Today - 5th July

A key charity event is taking place at Pendle Hippodrome Theatre in Colne after one of its former members has suffered illness.

Katie Chadwick, an ex-member of Hippodrome’s Youth Theatre and Theatre Company, was diagnosed with Encephalitis at the age of just 22. She was in a medically induced coma for over five months and, although still in hospital, she is now slowly making a miraculous recovery from this little known life-threatening rare condition. 

Read the story here

Read the follow up story here

Foodie Relishes Mountain Challenge

Malton Gazette & Herald - 13th May

Sophie Legard from Malton Relish is taking on the challenge of Ben Nevis to raise money for The Encephalitis Society in May. 

Having only just recovered from a broken leg "I know The Encephalitis Society does amazing work for those affected by the devastating condition" 

Sophie knows about Encephalitis, inflammation of the brain, from personal experience “Only recently a friend’s young daughter died from it and as a teenager a friend’s father also suffered from it. Encephalitis is a truly terrible condition”

Ben Nevis is the highest mountain in Britain, standing at 4409 feet (1344 metres) above sea level. Sophie will be tackling its slopes on 16 May and expects the ascent and descent to take about eight hours. 


She added “It will be tough but really worthwhile.  And I’ll be back to help make the Malton Food Festival a great success, even if my feet are sore!”

New Vice President - Tom Naylor-Leyland

Gazette & Herald And The Mercury - 6th May 

The Society is thrilled to announced our new Vice President Tom Naylor Leyland!


Tom Naylor-Leyland, from the Fitzwilliam Malton Estate and organiser of the Malton Food Lovers Festival, will lend his support to the charity, which was set up in the town in 1994 and now operates globally.

Dr Ava Easton, chief executive of The Encephalitis Society, said: “We are proud to be based in Malton from where we can provide support and help to those affected by Encephalitis anywhere in the world.

“It is an excellent location where we can recruit good staff and operate as a charity without the big overheads that being elsewhere might burden us with.

“Both The Society and Tom want the best for Malton, it is our home. We want to play our part in its success, and we are getting excited about welcoming visitors to our cook book stall during the Malton Food Lovers Festival this month.”

Tom said: “I’m delighted and honoured to now be involved with this impressive and important charity.”

Read the Gazette & Herald article here

Read the Malton & Pickering Mercury article here

Taylor Wimpey Helps Build Our Support

The Northern Echo - 1st May 

National property developer Taylor Wimpey have recently donated £500 to help fund our Support Line, providing help and advice to anyone affected by Encephalitis.

Taylor Wimpey have a development, Broughton Manor, which is near The Society's office in Malton and 

Debbie Whittingham, sales and marketing director at Taylor Wimpey North Yorkshire, explains: “Encephalitis is a devastating condition so as soon as we heard about the work the charity does, we jumped at the chance to offer our support.


“The charity is the only one of its kind in the world and the support they are offering to so many people across the country is just incredible.”

Dr Easton concludes: “I would like to thank Taylor Wimpey for helping to fund our support line for so many hours. This help really will be invaluable to so many people"

Read the article here

VEKA team warm up for the Great Manchester Run

The Lancashire Telegraph - 1st May

Four members of the VEKA Management team are lacing up their running shoes for The Encephalitis Society and taking part in the upcoming Morrisons Great Manchester 10k Run.

The VEKA UK Group is proudly committed to raising money for charity each year, and this year - the cause is one close to the heart of the company. VEKA is fundraising for The Encephalitis Society throughout this year, hoping to raise as much money as possible and increase awareness of this rare brain condition after a friend and colleague was diagnosed.


Adrian Lord - Head of Production, Dave Holmes - Lamination Manager, Peter Eatough - Quality Manager and Gabriela Hammond - Head of HR, will be hitting the track and can be sponsorted via


Read the article here

Lancet Conference Focus on Anti-NMDA Receptor Encephalitis

The Lancet Neurology - 22 April 2015

The Society recently sponsored a major international conference in Barcelona organised by The Lancet Neurology magazine. 

Attended and presented to by The Society's Chief Executive, Dr Ava Easton, the conference placed great emphasis on Anti NMDa Receptor Encephalitis. Our Ambassador Susannah Cahalan, who was diagnosed with this form of the condition and has written the best-selling book "Brain On Fire", was also present and made a major contribution to the event.

Read the article here

Aliki Runs The Virgin London Marathon

26th April 2015

Our Ambassador Aliki Chrysochou's superb fundraising effort in running the Virgin London Marathon has been highlighted by various magazines and blogs - helping us raise vital awareness of the condition.


Aliki, who contracted Encephalitis as a young woman, has fought back from major effects of the condition and is now recognised as a fantastic vocalist who did extremely well on Britain's Got Talent.

As part of World Encephalitis Day on 22 February she gave a unique one-off concert , "Awakenings", at Liverpool's Everyman Theatre.

Virgin London Marathon

Daily Mail

Posability Magazine



Star94star Blog

Windows Support for The Encephalitis Society

The Malton Mercury - 28th March 2015

The Encephalitis Society is set to benefit from a doubling of support from one of Europe's leading makers of doors and windows.

 VEKA UK, based in Burnley, will raise funds for us for a full year instead of its normal six months backing for charities. 

Colin Torley, Sales and Marketing Director of The VEKA UK Group said; "We chose The Encephalitis Society as our charity for this year as it is a cause that is close to our hearts".

"Usually we split our fundraising efforts and choose a different charity every six months. This time we've decided to direct our efforts for the whole year towards the Society's valuable work. We have lots of exciting events planned, with many more in the pipeline and we hope they prove to be incredibly succesful - so we can give as much support as possible"

See full story at The Malton Mercury

World Encephalitis Day Stimulates Media Interest

World Encephalitis Day - 22nd February 2015

More than fifty media articles across the world were published as a result of World Encephalitis Day (WED). Both before and after WED on the 22 February, the printed press and broadcast media featured Encephalitis, with Dr Ava Easton, our Chief Executive, in demand as the authoritative voice about the condition and its effects.

In total, the potential reach of this media coverage was 12.5million people, raising awareness amongst a massive audience. One aspect of the coverage that's significant is that it encompassed many different types of publications - both broadsheet and tabloid newspapers, podcasts, websites, and radio. 

Links to many of the articles are available on our WED website here.

Community Open Evening - 18th December 2014

A great evening to connect with our local community and offer our thanks for support with mulled wine, canapes and mince pies!

DSC_0621.1.jpgDr Ava Easton, chief executive of The Encephalitis Society, said: “We know many people must walk or drive past our offices on Castlegate and wonder what it is we do. This is a relaxed and very friendly evening where they can find out, and have a Christmas bite to eat and drink and where we can say thanks to the support we’ve had from the local community.“

Read the full Malton & Pickering Article here

Hat Trick of Honours for CEO! - Malton Mercury


It is said good things come in threes and that is certainly the case for Dr Ava Easton.

The chief executive of The Encephalitis Society has been rewarded for her hard work with the Malton-based charity which has become an internationally renowned resource for the condition – an inflammation of the brain – while under her leadership.

Read the rest of the article here

Malton & Norton Rotary - Malton Masters Golf Day

Malton and Norton Rotary invited The Encephalitis Society to be a recipient of the Malton Masters Golf Competition fundraising efforts along with Yorkshire Cancer Research.  

With over 20 teams from the local community the day was a huge success, raising hundreds of pounds for both of the charity's! 

A big thank you to Malton & Norton Golf Club for hosting the event and to the Malton and Norton Rotary for their ongoing support of our work!


North and East Yorkshire Building Excellence Awards 2014

We were invited by North Yorkshire Building Control Partnership to give a speech about Encephalitis and our work at the prestigious black tie North and East Yorkshire Building Excellence Awards. Not only were we able to raise awareness but we were also the recipients of the evening's fundraising raffle. 


A massive thank you to Tom from SALT Architects who kindly donated his winnings of over £400 back to The Society, helping bring the final total to £885! 


Thank you to all that supported our cause and good luck to all the winners going on to the national awards in London. 

Putting Tick-borne Diseases on the Map

A multi-disciplinary Steering Committee of experts, including Society Chief Executive, Ava Easton, has called on the European Parliament to take action against the spread of tick-borne diseases in Europe. In the first ever report of its kind, the Putting Tick-borne Diseases on the Map: Reporting the Reality of Tick-borne Diseases Across Europe Steering Committee calls on policy makers, clinicians, travel and tour operators and employers to exercise their responsibilities to people at-risk of contracting tick-borne diseases. Through awareness, prevention and accurate diagnosis and reporting, these stakeholders can help to combat the growing risk posed by tick-borne diseases across Europe.


Tick-borne diseases, including tick-borne Encephalitis and Lyme borrelliosis, are the most common vector-borne diseases in Europe. Despite this, and the danger that they pose to the public health environment, awareness of these diseases and methods to prevent exposure vary widely across Europe. The Putting Tick-borne Diseases on the Map: Reporting the Reality of Tick-borne Diseases across Europe report seeks to address this variability one year on from the European Commission’s decision to make tick-borne encephalitis a notifiable disease, meaning that any cases diagnosed in Europe must be reported to the relevant health authorities.

"Encephalitis is a thief." said Ava Easton, member of the Steering Committee and Chief Executive of the Encephalitis Society. "It robs people of things that most of us take for granted - personality, memory, cognition, occupation, family. It robs families of their lived ones and even in families where those affected survive, they experience a complicated form of bereavement for the person they once knew. We all have a duty to protect people from unknowingly inviting encephalitis into their lives.” 

The Steering Committee’s calls to action are underpinned by a survey of over 700 individuals at-risk of contracting a tick-borne disease. This survey confirms that awareness of the risks posed by tick-borne diseases vary widely across Europe. Moreover, the survey suggests that people may be putting themselves at-risk of contracting a tick-borne disease because they are unaware of effective methods of prevention, including the use of repellents, protective clothing and vaccination.

The full report can be found here.


Breakfast with the Society

Liz Oldershaw tells BBC Breakfast about Encephalitis

Regional Representative Liz Oldershaw and her sister Ruthie, along with Operations Manager Phillippa Chapman recently featured in a segment on BBC Breakfast.

Liz was affected by Encephalitis and subsequently lost a large part of her memory along with the ability to read and write. She describes how her family used photographs to aid her recovery. 

International Ambassador Visits UK


Gazette & Herald 21st August 2013

AN award-winning journalist and author is visiting Malton next week to promote her work with an international charity based in the town.

Susannah Cahalan, from the New York Post and author of Brain On Fire: My Month of Madness will be looking round the Encephalitis Society’s premises in Castlegate and signing copies of her book.

She recently became the latest International Ambassador for the Encephalitis Society after suffering from the life-threatening illness and witnessing first-hand the service that the charity provides.

Susannah will join other prominent ambassadors including Rebecca Adlington, Mathew Bose, Aliki Chrysochou and Simon Hattenstone in representing the charity.

Encephalitis is inflammation of the brain caused either by an infection or through the immune system attacking the brain in error.

Brain on Fire is Susannah’s story of her hunt for a diagnosis, as, after dozens of tests and scans, baffled doctors concluded she should be confined in a psychiatric ward.

It is also the story of how one man, Syria-born Dr Najar, finally proved – using a simple pen and paper – that Susannah’s psychotic behaviour was caused by a rare auto-immune disease attacking her brain.

Susannah will be visiting the Encephalitis Society on Tuesday, 10.30am-11.30am.

Members of the public are invited to attend to meet Susannah Cahalan and learn more about the illness and the Malton-based charity.

For more information email or phone 01653 602073.

The Kids with No Memory - Channel 5 Documentary

Channel 5 - Tuesday 8th August 2013 - 8PM

The Society has been working for over 18 months with OR Media to help produce a documentary about children and young people that have had brain injuries which has resulted in problems with memory. Our primary aim was to try and raise awareness not just about Encephalitis and our work but also around the bigger issue that memory problems can exist in young people as a result of a variety of neurological conditions.  We are hoping that raising awareness will improve the experiences of living with such a difficult condition for these young people. 

After such a long time the fruits of our labours are complete and the documentary is being screened next week at 8pm on Tuesday 6th August on Channel 5 - prime time viewing - we are so excited!  Two of the children and families featured in the documentary are our Members - Rosie and her mum Helen and Sam and his mum and dad. Here is the link to the Radio Times listing. 

 From left to right - Sam, Ricky, Rosie and Clem - the stars of the show!


Filming on location in Yorkshire - making our camp fire.



For more information now, here is an interview with the Mail on Sunday about the programme. 

Malton and Norton Pride Awards

The Mercury did a wonderful page spread on the Society and our involvement with the Pride of Malton & Norton Awards. We have been fortunate enough to have been chosen the Charity of the year and it is great to see such local recognition of The Society.

The WePride_Awards.jpg Love Malton events group and the Malton & Pickering Mercury have joined forces to organise the community competition, which climaxes with a glittering ceremony at the Milton Rooms, Malton, on October 27, we were so pleased to be in attendance being part of the celebration of our local community.  

To see the article please follow the link to the Malton Mercury or download the Pdf

Here we are with our cheque for £650 - a wonderful donation and the article in the Mercury 9th January 2013


Expressions of Encephalitis

'Expression of Encephalitis' - Saturday 10th November 2012, London


The Encephalitis Society hosted in partnership with Moore Blatch a glamourous event please see the link here written by our Trustee Tim Spring about the event. 



Rosie Paley the Runner Up in the Art Category also featured in her local news - another chance to help raise awareness!

Alan Morris the winner of the Photography Category featured on his employers website - Royal Mail

Freemason Grand Charity

The Freemason Grand Charity kindly donated to the Society £3000 and Ava and Phillippa were presented with the cheque at the Malton Freemason Lodge 8th January 2013. It was a wonderful evening and chance to raise awareness in the local community. 


The Encephalitis Society is the operating name of the Encephalitis Support Group which is a registered Charity and Company Limited by Guarantee.

Registered in England and Wales No. 4189027. Registered Office as above. Registered Charity No. 1087843.