Hartlepool pensioner’s life story raises charity cash

Joe Ludgate with a copy of his book
Joe Ludgate with a copy of his book

A PENSIONER who recorded his life story in a book has donated a combined £105 to five different charities.

Dad and granddad Joe Ludgate decided to write a book of memoirs – called An Ordinary Life – seven years ago, on his 80th birthday.

The 87-year-old bought back 300 of the books from the publishers and sold them half price, at a cost of £3.50, to raise money for numerous charities.

Earlier this year he split cash between Cancer Research UK, because his son Tony, 67, is suffering with the disease, the Alzheimer’s Society, because his wife Frances, 86, has the condition, and the British Heart Foundation, because Joe himself suffers with heart disease.

Now though Joe, who has six children, 11 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, has given his latest wad of sales cash to another five good causes.

He gave £25 to The Royal British Legion, £20 to the British Red Cross, £20 to Children’s Cancer, £20 to Dinsdale Lodge resident’s fund, and £20 to the Alzheimer’s Centre in Gretton Court.

He said: “Altogether I’ve given out £295 to charities from the sale of my book, and to tell you the truth it feels great. I’ve still got quite a few left but I’m just going to hand them into the charity shops now.”

He added: “I’ve enjoyed selling the book, and the response I’ve had off people telling me I’m doing a good job.”

Joe, who previously worked as a driver for Cameron’s Brewery and a crane driver for the Steelworks before he retired, said it took him about five or six months to compile the book with the help of a ghost writer.