Forces charities say thanks

Hayley Wilson, Craig, Paul (Craig's dad) and Shauna-Leigh (Craig's daughter)
Hayley Wilson, Craig, Paul (Craig's dad) and Shauna-Leigh (Craig's daughter)

TWO forces charities have thanked a Hartlepool hero and his family for “making a difference” following a fundraising evening earlier this year.

Inspirational Craig Winspear’s life was transformed forever in December last year after having both of his legs blown off from the knee down in an explosion while he was serving in Afghanistan.

The last thing the brave former High Tunstall College of Science student remembers is waking up in hospital on Christmas Eve with both of his legs amputated, after his devastated family had been warned to prepare themselves for the very worst.

Lance Corporal Winspear, 30, a dad-of-one, also lost his thumb and ring finger on his right hand in the explosion, but has refused to let the blast ruin his life.

He said he does not let the injuries stop him doing things, and earlier this year, Lance Corporal Winspear, who now lives in Bedfordshire with his girlfriend, Hayley Wilson, made the trip back to Hartlepool for a fundraising evening at Hartlepool Catholic Club, organised by his dad Paul and granddad Albert.

The event raised £1,500 which was split between Help for Heroes and The Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Families Association (SSAFA).

After the cash was handed over, both charities contacted Craig’s dad, Paul, to express their huge thanks for the donation.

A letter from Help for Heroes read: “Thank you so much for your donation of £750.

“We appreciate every penny that comes in and will ensure that it is put to use providing direct, practical support for men and women who are wounded while in the service of our country.

“Our work is by no means over.

“There is a great deal to do, but your contribution will make a great difference to the lives of some very special people.”

The family also received a letter of thanks from SSAFA, which read: “We just want to say a huge thankyou and the fundraising that you have done for us.

“We really do appreciate it and you can rest assured that it will help us to continue the work we do.”

Paul, 48, who lives in the Burn Valley area of town with wife, Wendy, 40, said: “We were absolutely delighted to raise as much as we did so it’s a huge thanks to everybody who came along and supported our event.”