An Amazing Afternoon of Fundraising Fun!

On Sunday 9th June we raised £527 for Lyme Disease UK.

I never cease to be in awe of the generosity of time and commitment which the folk around here show in support of events put on for charity at Molyneux Drive Community Centre.  Time after time they come along and raise money for charity. This time it was for Lyme Disease. September it will be Macmillan Nurses (different events throughout the month) and October or November it will be Hedgehog Rescue Blackpool.

We had little time and no budget to organise the Afternoon Tea Dance/Fundraiser for Lyme Disease UK, so everyone made sandwiches, snacks, all kinds of goodies to wet the appetite, and our lovely Rob from My Chef arrived with dozens of cakes for the cause. Ian, more of whom later, came along free of charge to sing for us – it was a total joint effort for such a little known cause.

Sophie Ward, an Olympic Gold Medalist until struck down by Lyme Disease, came along, and our own Maude Todd’s daughter, Yvonne was there too, another Lyme Disease sufferer.

The afternoon began with the two ladies telling us about Lyme Disease and its devastating effect on their lives, then had a question and answer session. I learned a lot from them both and count myself blessed that I never encountered the tic which causes Lyme’s. I grew up spending many months a year down in rural Norfolk, running in my Uncle’s fields of corn, barley and long grass. How easily my life could have changed.

Following the talk, Ian McLeod, local entertainer, sang songs old and new, whilst people helped themselves to plates of food and thoroughly enjoyed the music. Live music is so much better than taped, don’t you think? Ian did us proud, and you know as soon as I spoke to him about the Afternoon Tea Dance for Lyme Disease UK, he immediately said he would sing without charge. How good a person is he. Thank you, Ian.Around 3.30, whilst Ian took a break, our Councillor Peter Hunter presented a cheque to Sophie and Yvonne. They were thrilled and we were, too.

Then we drew the raffle, almost 30 donated items up for the taking, and finally the time came for us to venture into new territory. Les and Dawn – Les is our Chairman – had made up a huge hamper. When I say huge, I mean huge. It had everything you could want inside and it was wrapped and ribboned – and we had decided to auction it.  We’ve never done an auction before, but thought that if the hamper made £20, that was an additional £20 for Lyme Disease UK, rather than it being part of the general raffle.

Guess what. Go on. How much did the hamper go for? £20? £25? £30? £35? £40? £45? £50. Yes, £50. Talk about us being gob smacked!

We ended up making another donation of £26 in cash to Sophie and Yvonne for Lyme Disease UK. Isn’t that just wonderful. We were overwhelmed when we realised we had almost £500, but to add to that total made our day.

Once we had recovered our breaths, Ian sang some more songs and one of our own, Peter Bell – he was a singer with Maureen Nolan (mum of the Sisters) a year or three back and he has a beautiful voice – sang a couple of songs. He did a rendition of You’ll Never Walk Alone which would far surpass Gerry (of the Pacemakers) for emotion. Brilliant.

A good afternoon. Everyone gave a helping hand in clearing up, and everyone went home smiling and humming a tune.

Thank you all, friends and neighbours. You are very special people.

From Viv Critchley, Secretary of Molyneux Drive Friends and Neighbours Association


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