A one-week delay failed to prevent the award-winning Christmas tree collection for East Cheshire Hospice from being an outstanding success yet again.
Bad weather which forced organisers to hastily re-arrange the pick-up until the weekend of January 21 and 22 did not deter donors or volunteers.
More than 7,000 trees were collected and an incredible 18 per cent increase in donations means the final donation to the Hospice is expected to be more than £115,000 this year.
It means that almost £800,000 has been donated to East Cheshire Hospice since the scheme began in 2001.
That success has led to the award of the prestigious Queen's Award for Voluntary Service which was presented by Hospice President David Briggs MBE KStJ, Her Majesty's Lord-Lieutenant of Cheshire, before volunteers set off from Prestbury Village Hall after breakfast and a briefing on the first morning.
Mr Briggs, who was accompanied by Kathy Cowell OBE DL, High Sheriff of Cheshire, reminded everyone involved that donations are put towards core costs of running the Hospice, emphasising how important such fundraising is to the care of patients.
Collections were made far and wide, including Macclesfield, Poynton, Chelford, Alderley Edge, Disley, Wilmslow, Knutsford and Congleton.
Co-organiser Richard Raymond said: "We're delighted with the record total raised and the decision to postpone the collection fully paid off. The adverse weather could have led to accidents or injuries.
"We had almost 40 vans out each day and the delay meant we had to reorganise the rota because some of our 250 volunteers couldn't make it for various reasons but everyone rallied round and did an amazing job.
"The delay even meant we took an extra 150 bookings and we'd like to thank everyone who donated so generously. It's really appreciated by the patients and their families.
"We'd also like to thank the volunteers who helped in so many ways, whether it was making cakes, telephone calls or collecting trees."
More news from Henbury
Theft of Keyless CarsCheshire Police has just issued this warning. #Increase Of Vehicles Being Stolen There has been a significant increase in keyless thefts of vehicles across the force. This has been made a force priority. Please ensure you use other means to secure your vehicle i.e. in a secure garage, mechanical steering lock, behind secure gates etc. and report anything...
Henbury now has a defibrillator for use in an emergency should the situation arise. The defibrillator is located in the Church Hall porch in an easily accessible heated cabinet.The Parish Council put in a bid for a British Heart Foundation grant to help with the cost of obtaining a public defibrillator, and were successful. Generous donations from the Henbury Society and the Henbury Events...
Some news on schemes to help Cheshire East residents:Free e-learning course for family carers of people with DementiaThis course is for carers, to help you stay connected to loved ones, manage stress at home and defuse difficult situations. For more info please visit Future Learn. There's a limited time...
Church Hall Car Park