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Weary walkers raise £1,262 for our appeal

Charity walkers for the Oliver Smith Appeal at the Sheppey Crossing
Charity walkers for the Oliver Smith Appeal at the Sheppey Crossing

Parents and children have been putting their best foot forward for our Oliver Smith Appeal.

A sponsored walk from Sittingbourne station to Sheerness raised £1,262 towards the £150,000 target to pay for life-saving treatment for the youngster.

Our total now stands at an incredible £59,350.

Sunday’s walk involved eight children, the youngest of which was eight, and six adults. It took four hours to complete the seven-mile trek, which was organised by a friend of the Smith family, Natasha Carpenter, whose two children also took part.

The route followed Milton Creek and crossed the old Sheppey bridge, before reaching its final destination, Beachfield’s Park, Sheerness.

The group was met by three-year-old Oliver and mum Natalie with the nearby McDonald’s laying on food and drink for the weary walkers.

Tesco in Sittingbourne also chipped in, providing sweets and drinks for the journey.

Natasha, 36, said: “The walk was very tiring and we were all absolutely shattered.

“The kids were incredible, I’m proud of every single one of them.

“They couldn’t have done any more.”

Oliver Smith Appeal logo
Oliver Smith Appeal logo

Oliver suffers from the childhood cancer neuroblastoma and the fund was set up to pay for treatment in Germany should his condition worsen.

Its coffers were boosted further this week when Martin Brunt, of Golden Leas Holiday Park, Bell Farm, donated a cheque for £1,053.

Also this week, Kerry Spurling, of Seashells Children and Family Centre, Sheerness, arrived at the Times Guardian office bearing gifts.

She handed over a cheque for £49, which was money collected following the death of her colleague Jenny Ronan, 64.

Jenny died earlier this year after a battle with lung cancer.

Her heartbroken family asked that her work colleagues decide where any donations should be distributed.

Kerry said: “The Oliver Smith Appeal was something very close to Jenny.

“She would’ve wanted the money to go there.”

With our appeal almost at the £60,000 mark, Oliver’s mum Natalie remains overwhelmed at the public’s generosity.

She said: “I’m just totally lost for words.

“I can’t thank the wonderful Island people for all their help.”

Our Oliver Smith wristbands and The Help Oliver CD continue to be popular fundraisers.

Both are available at the front desk of our Sheerness office priced £2 and £5 respectively.

  • Friday, November 18. The Ivy Leaf pub in Sheerness is hosting a music night from 7.30pm to 1am. It features local bands and an MC. Entry costs £2.
  • Saturday, November 19. The Ivy Leaf pub in Sheerness is staging an all-day community gig from 3pm onwards. A host of local bands will perform. Entry costs to be confirmed.
  • Saturday, November 26. A sponsored swim takes place at Sheerness swimming pool from 3pm to 5pm. Entry costs £1.
  • Saturday, December 31. A New Year’s Eve party is being held at Woodcoombe Hall, Murston, from 7.30pm to 12.30pm. Tickets cost £10 for adults, children free.
  • If you would like to donate to Oliver’s appeal there is a collection bucket in the Times Guardian office or you cancontribute online
  • If Oliver does not need the money, it will be redistributed to other causes related to neuroblastoma through the charity Families Against Neuroblastoma.
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