MP honours tree-rific volunteers!

David Rutley thanks East Cheshire Hospice tree collection teams

MP for Macclesfield David Rutley joined the chorus of voices praising the incredible efforts of this year’s squadron of volunteers for the East Cheshire Hospice Tree Collection.

Following another hugely successful Christmas tree collection in aid of the hospice, which took place on Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th January, it’s hoped that records will again have been broken thanks to the efforts of the small army of volunteers involved.

The collection, now in its seventeenth year, has seen hundreds of thousands of pounds raised in aid of the Macclesfield-based hospice, in exchange for local residents parting company with their Christmas trees at the end of the festive period.

Following a briefing and bacon butty at Prestbury Village Hall on Saturday morning, volunteers were dispatched across the area to pick up as much pine for pounds as they could.

In total, more than 6,500 trees from more than 2,000 different roads were collected over the weekend.

David was on hand at the send off on Saturday morning and the Lord Lieutenant for Cheshire, David Briggs MBE, was on hand on Sunday to add their support to the team’s efforts.

While organisers are still totting up the final total raised, they are confident that the generosity of people in East Cheshire remains undiminished.

Following the collection, co-organiser Peter Chapman said: “With a final forecast of over £90,000 being raised for the hospice this year, we continue to be amazed and delighted at the support that has been given across our 250 square mile collection area.

“This means the collection has now raised more than £670,000 from what started with one £10 note!”

“The growth and success of the collection for the hospice over the past 16 years could not have been achieved without the dedication and commitment of more than 300 dedicated volunteers, our fantastic sponsors and the generosity of 6,600 customers who registered for collection and donated to the hospice.

“Our hospices provide essential and amazing care to many people with life limiting illnesses - we are very pleased to be able to support them through what has become an annual community recycling event.

“We now hope that this feels like a regular part of Christmas for everyone involved.”

Rob Barrow, chair of trustees at East Cheshire Hospice, added: “The tree collection is the Hospice’s largest fundraising event of the year, and we are incredibly grateful to everyone who supports it.

“We rely on the community to pay 80% of the costs to keep the hospice open, so events like this are essential to ensure we can continue to provide essential care and support to those with life limiting illnesses.

“I’d like to say a huge thank you to the organisers who make it such a success each year.”

David Rutley added his thanks too and said: “It was great to be able to support such a fantastic local community event, which brings so many people together to raise money for our highly valued hospice.

“I would like to thank all the organisers and volunteers who helped to take part in the collection, and made it possible for so many households to contribute.

“Special thanks should also go to David Briggs MBE for giving up so much of his time to help out, staff from East Cheshire Hospice who came to add their support, as their shift patterns allowed them to, and of course, everyone who donated so generously to the collection.”

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