Get involved! Send photos, video, news & views. Text SWINDON NEWS to 80360 or email us
Raising a cuppa for MacMillan in Swindon and surrounding area
5:26pm Friday 27th September 2013 in News
Buy this photo » Liz Poulton gets into the spirit of the occasion at the Civic offices in Highworth Pictures: DAVE COX
HUNDREDS of people around Swindon turned out for the World’s Biggest Coffee morning today to raise money for Macmillan.
Many pubs, community centres and schools took part in the 23rd year of the event, including events at the Highworth Civic Offices, at Nationwide Building Society branches, Grange Juniors and Grange Infants school in Stratton, and Lydiard Park Academy.
At Brookhouse Farm in Middleleaze, landlady Debby Chesterman had a whole weekend of events planned including a body waxing session today and a charity headshave as well as staff running 100 miles on treadmills to raise more than £1,000 for the charity.
Debby said: “It was absolutely fantastic, and we’ve raised lots of money for Macmillan.
“I just want to say a big thank you to everybody who has come out and supported us, all our friends and locals who have donated cakes or got involved to help raise money for such a good cause.”
Sharon Boxall, 57, was one of the people who came along to help raise money for the charity. She said: “It’s been brilliant, a really good effort. I support Macmillan because my auntie died from breast cancer and she was helped by a Macmillan Cancer Support.”
More than 622 events are being held over the weekend, involving coffee mornings, charity headshaves, runs and drinks parties.
Dawn Stuckey, 70, was one of the organisers who helped to put together the coffee morning and bric-a-brac sale and raffle held at Lydiard Millicent village hall.
Dawn, who was in charge of the tombola, said: “I get a buzz from raising money for Macmillan.
“I think these coffee mornings are a fab idea they bring people together and make money for an important cause.
“I suffered from cancer 13 years ago and I know how alone sufferers feel, going through something like that brings you friends you didn’t know you had. I had fantastic support from my friends and family and lots of people from Lydiard all pulled together to help me.
“I would say a third of the things on the tombola were bought brand new specifically for this. I also had lots of £10 and £5 donations from people who couldn’t come along today.”
At Lydiard Park Academy, the staff held a cake competition and students took part in a cake sale and a Fairtrade cafe.
Teacher Mrs Iqbal said: “As always this has been an eventful day at Lydiard Park Academy, we have hosted a variety of events from staff cake competition, cake sale for students and a Fairtrade café .
“Mrs Richards has once again wowed the judges and acclaimed the title of Lydiard Park Academy Baker for the second year running.”
Last year the fundraiser saw more than 115,000 people sign up to hold a coffee morning across the UK, raising a whopping £15m for the charity which supports specialist cancer-care nurses.
Gillian Thornton, the chairman of the Swindon Macmillan Cancer Support committee, was very positive about this year’s response.
She said: “It’s really been very good. It’s been absolutely brilliant. And I am so grateful to everyone who came along and donated and enjoyed the morning.
“It’s been amazing how the whole community gets together to raise so much money.
“I have been seeing so many signs about different coffee mornings being held throughout the town.
“Different committees are doing different things, some of the coffee mornings also have stalls and games as well as coffee and cakes.
“In Lydiard Millicent too it’s been brilliant, and the Luncheon Club have been wonderful with providing tea and coffee free of charge.
“It’s a very popular event and nationally it raises a huge amount of money for Macmillan, which means that the money goes towards supporting a great many people.”
For more information about the event or about Macmillan, visit macmillan.org.uk.