HARTLEPOOL’S Ceremonial Mayor has thanked local people for their generosity after they helped him break charity fundraising records for the second year in a row.
Councillor Stephen Akers-Belcher raised a massive £43,000 during his 2013/14 municipal year in office – topping the civic record of £40,000 which he set the year before.
The fundraising events included everything from ghost hunts and choir concerts to book sales and a Burns Night supper.
The bonanza means that the mayor’s three chosen charities for 2013/14 – Macmillan Cancer Support, the Pansies Breast Cancer Support Group and the Denise Taylor Cancer Trust – are each receiving £11,000.
Because the Mayor has well exceeded his personal target for the year, he is sharing the remaining £10,000 between two more good causes - Hartlepool & District Hospice, where it is helping to pay for the creation of a sensory garden, and the Teenage Cancer Trust at Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital.
He said: “I can’t thank people enough for the time and dedication they put into organising the many fundraising events over the past year or for coming along to support them. This is a magnificent achievement of which everyone should be really proud.”
Each of the charities will receive their cheque from the Mayor in a separate presentation, and the first of these was to Macmillan Cancer Support, which had particular poignancy for the Mayor.
Liz Airey, Macmillan cancer support’s fundraising manager for Teesside, Hartlepool, Peterlee and Wearside, said: “This wonderful donation will go a long way to help us in our work and we thank the Mayor and the people of Hartlepool for such kind and generous support.”