Sneh Patel, who was diagnosed with ovarian cancer last year, never thought she would live to see her 70th birthday.

The pensioner from Harrow – who turned 70 on Sunday (July 14) - knew she felt incredibly sick in 2017, but after continuous check-ups, doctors could not find the reason why.

A year later, Ms Patel discovered she had ovarian cancer with a 17.5cm tumour in her ovaries.

She said: “They took me to Northwick Park Hospital to get the cancer treated, but as soon as I walked in, I collapsed.”

Doctors believed it was too late for Mrs Patel and she was told she only had a few days left to live.

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Her daughter flew in from Sydney and she was supported by her family as she moved into a hospital in Hammersmith.

Even after her chemotherapy treatment, Mrs Patel was still suffering the repercussions from the treatment and felt extremely ill. Her daughter decided to stay by her side for six months as Mrs Patel recovered.

Mrs Patel celebrated her 70th birthday over the weekend. But instead of having a massive party, Mrs Patel raised money for Cancer Research UK in a private picnic event at the Stanmore Rugby Club.

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She added: “I didn’t want a party or anything like that even though my family wanted to. In that time at Hammersmith, I saw people suffering, I saw people struggling, so I want to help fund research. My time may be nearly gone, but I can still help the next generation.”

Friends and family of Mrs Patel are donating various foods and cake for the picnic, with nearly £1,000 raised so far. Her son-in-law from Sydney was told by his boss that whatever amount is raised, the boss will double it.

While the event this year was private to selected friends and family, Mrs Patel hopes many people will donate to Cancer Research UK for her birthday and is already considering whether or not to host a public event for her next birthday.