Fundraiser hits tablet target for Leeds hospice

Fundraiser Brian Gilligan with Old Ball pub manager Tracy Marper (left) and team member Grace Atha
Fundraiser Brian Gilligan with Old Ball pub manager Tracy Marper (left) and team member Grace Atha
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A man has helped raise over £4,000 for Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice in Headingley so patients can have better access to technology.

Yeadon’s Brian Gilligan, 44, decided to fundraise for the hospice after the death of one of his closest friends, Gary ‘Deano’ Dean in December 2015.

Deano was cared for by staff at Wheatfields during the final stages of his illness.

Brian wanted to raise enough money to buy multiple tablet PCs for patients and their families to use for internet access and entertainment during their care period.

Working with his local pub, The Old Ball in Horsforth, he has now smashed his fundraising goal, netting £4,335, through bake sales, raffles, online donations and a family fun day. Deano was a popular figure at the pub and his portrait hangs in the bar above his favourite seat.

Brian said: “I’m delighted we’ve managed to smash our original target and have raised enough money to not only supply the tablets but to help with the day to day running of Wheatfields. Patients can now have tablets to go online, communicate with family and friends or stream films or TV programmes. I wanted to raise enough money so there are enough tablets for every patient at Wheatfields and we’ve done this and a little more which will be put to great use.”

Mary Campbell, head of hospice fundraising thanked Brian and staff and customers at The Old Ball. She said: “They have raised an incredible amount of money which will really make a difference here at Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice. We can only continue to provide the care we do because of people like Brian fundraising for us, and for him to have raised so much is just wonderful.”