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Pub regulars turn pennies into pounds for hospice

CHEERS ... The Vigilant pub manager Steve Tomkins, left, hands St Clares Hospice fundraiser Vanessa Mustard a cheque for �600.

CHEERS ... The Vigilant pub manager Steve Tomkins, left, hands St Clares Hospice fundraiser Vanessa Mustard a cheque for �600.

A PENNY off a pint at a South Tyneside pub has seen drinkers raising their glasses to a charity bonanza.

Customers at The Vigilant, in Sunderland Road, South Shields, have already raised £900 for St Clare’s Hospice by donating pennies off the price of their favourite pint.

When Chancellor George Osborne knocked a penny off the price of a pint in last year’s budget, management at The Vigilant saw it as the perfect way to support a good cause.

Knocking 1p off the cost of a pint, they asked customers to either pocket the money or boost a borough charity instead.

A £600 cheque was soon handed over to St Clare’s Hospice – and the pennies have continued to grow into pounds.

Steven Tomkins, manager of The Vigilant, said: “After a penny was knocked off the price of a pint of beer, myself and owner Brian Campbell decided to offer customers the chance to donate the 1p saving to charity.

“And 99 per cent of our customers tell us to just put the penny in the special budget box we’ve made, and so far we’ve raised £800 altogether.

“It’s a fantastic amount and we would just like to thank our customers for their support.

“We are still keeping it going, to see how much more we can raise.”

Vanessa Mustard, senior fundraiser at St Clare’s Hospice, in Primrose Terrace, Jarrow, said: “We were delighted when The Vigilant initially told us of their plan to fundraise by donating 1p for every pint sold, but I didn’t think we or the pub really thought about how much this would amount to.

“It just goes to show how quickly all those 1p donations can add up.

“Every penny really does count and we are really grateful to all the customers for getting behind the fundraising project, but also the management at the pub for putting us forward to receive their donations.”

If you would like to support St Clare’s, which provides palliative care to people with life-limiting illnesses, call 451 6400, e-mail fundraising@stclareshospice.co.uk or visit www.stclareshospice.co.uk

Twitter: @terrykelly16

 

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