Watford businessman Matt Tristram had two very special reasons to raise money for Cancer Research by giving up alcohol this January.

In January 2013 his father, Ron, passed away due to a brain tumour, 10 months after being diagnosed while in Thailand.

Then on December 3 Mr Tristram’s brother-in-law, Andrew Williams, lost his 15-month battle with cancer, aged just 30.

Mr Williams had been diagnosed with colon cancer a few months after his daughter Amelia was born. The cancer spread, and despite the best efforts of all the medical team and relentless treatment, he died just 10 days after marrying his childhood sweetheart Louise.

Mr Tristram said: "Dad passing away was a terrible shock as he was only 62, but losing Andy has had a profound effect on all the family and his friends.

"My sister Louise has lost her husband at such a young age and my little niece Amelia won’t have her Daddy around to see her grow up."

So he decided to take part in Dryathlon, giving up alcohol throughout January to raise money for Cancer Research UK. He set himself a target of raising £500, and started a relentless Facebook and Twitter campaign, posting updates daily. He challenged more than 700 Facebook friends to pledge just a £1 each. The £500 target was quickly exceeded, and then Matt raised the bar to £1,000.

Astonishingly, the total has now reached over £5,000 with nearly 200 donations and they are still coming in.

Mr Tristram said: "Not drinking for a month has not been easy. Through my business, Loans Warehouse, I had to attend a very dry awards evening.

"If giving up alcohol for just a month can stop one more little girl having to grow up without her daddy, it’s a very small price to pay."

Mr Tristram confessed to looking forward to a drink at Bodega’s in Watford on Saturday night on February 1.

If you would like to make a donation please visit www.justgiving.com/Matt-Tristram-dryathlete2013/

Cancer Research UK is the world’s leading charity dedicated to beating cancer through research. Fighting cancer on all fronts, finding new ways to prevent, diagnose and treating cancer to save more lives. Their work is entirely funded by the public.