ALMOST £5,000 has been raised for two good causes after a community united in support of a popular barmaid who is battling cancer.
Staff and regulars at The Fountain pub, in Highfield Road, South Shields, have a reputation for giving generously with their time.
That proved to be true again when part-time barmaid Karen Fishpool was diagnosed with cancer last year.
The 42-year-old mother-of-two is on course for recovery after undergoing chemotherapy.
As a way of showing their support, a sponsored 15-mile cycle ride was staged from South Pier, South Shields, to Roker Pier, Sunderland, in aid of Breast Cancer Care.
In another major fundraising event, a group of regulars called The Benidorm Boys held a Super Santa Sunday, which raised money for the Children’s Heart Unit Fund (CHUF) at the Freeman Hospital, Newcastle. Deputy pub manager Sharon Wilks, who took part in the cycle ride, also went that extra mile – with a sponsored bath in a tub filled with baked beans.
At the launch of the fundraising efforts it had been hoped to raise £3,000.
But those expectations were smashed.
Now all the cash has been counted, the two charities are to benefit from £4,760.
Tonight the pub is holding another band night, featuring local group The Gaslighters, when cheques will be officially handed over to both charities.
Breast Cancer Care will receive £3,025 and CHUF will boost its coffers by £1.735.
Bob Teasdale, manager at The Fountain, said: “Karen is a very popular member of our staff and over the years has always been very supportive of other charity fundraising events at The Fountain.
“One of our regulars came up with the idea of the bike ride to support Karen. We have been overwhelmed by the generous response for both worthy causes.”
The pub has a long tradition of supporting charities and has been staging a variety of fundraising events, including a band night and prize draws, during the past few months to support these two selected good causes.