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Tony – one in a million

Throughout the month of June we have been reporting the inspirational story of double amputee Tony Hudgell who had planned to walk 10km in the month of June to raise money for the Evelina Children’s Hospital. In our last feature we said that five year old Tony had completed the walk and raised over a million pounds. He had pledged to carry on walking until the end of June and on the last day of the month he handed over his cheque to the charity for a massive £1073121.

Before publication of this article we checked on his current total and are pleased to see that it has increased to almost £1.2 million pounds with donations still coming in. When the reporters spoke to Tony they asked what he wanted to buy with the money. With a big grin he said toys!! Tony’s adopted parents could not have looked prouder as their son handed over his cheque. Certainly an inspirational story all round.

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Tony reaches 10km and one million pounds

This has been another amazing story that has captured the nation’s heart. Tony Hudgell who is five years old suffered horrific abuse and had to have his legs amputated as a baby. He was given the opportunity to try prosthetic legs to see if they would be a viable option for him. The target of walking a small distance each day culminating in 10km and raising funds for the Evelina Children’s Hospital was the idea after Tony had been inspired by Captain Tom Moore.

The challenge of walking short distances each day in the month of June would give Tony the chance to see if the prosthetic legs could be a life changer for him but more importantly give him the practice and confidence that he would need. Tony wanted to finish his 10km in the month of June but he has actually completed the challenge and finished five days early which is absolutely remarkable. Not only that but he has raised over one million pounds for the hospital. Tony has also decided that he will carry on walking each day. What an inspiration and an amazing young man who with such a huge amount of money raised for a relatively small charity must have made a huge difference not just to him with his walking but to all the other children who are treated at the hospital. The great news for Tony is that his walking with crutches has improved so much that he is now beginning to take steps unaided. Another challenge for him but with his courage and determination we are sure he will achieve this too. Perhaps in years to come we will see Tony in the Paralympics and we wish him all the best with his future, whatever that may be.

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The Dynamic duo

Last week we featured 8 year old Sophia Hyde who was running and cycling laps of her garden to raise money for the NHS and then on Saturday we featured the equally amazing Sophie Holmes who was going to complete the cycle and run part of an iron man competition from her own home and raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust and the NHS. Both these events will have inspired many and we thought we would update you with how the competition day for Sophie unfolded.

A slight hitch with the bike at the start meant that the event was delayed for a short while but that wasn’t going to stop Sophie. Sophie was cycling in her lounge and with the joys of technology was able to have people join her virtually. She was also live on Instagram and people were supporting her along the way. As we have mentioned before Sophie has Cystic Fibrosis and is unable to leave her house until the Coronavirus pandemic is over. Our own Chief Banana used his exercise session to run past and also complete some laps of her garden and was able to cheer Sophie on though a window.

With the cycle completed it was the marathon next – 842 laps of the garden. This is utterly insane. How do you keep motivated for that number of laps and the determination to finish is just utterly overwhelming.

We did watch her live on Instagram and the part that we actually loved was the virtual meeting of the two Sophs (Sophia and Sophie). As both have Cystic Fibrosis they cannot ever meet but they are both linked with the inspirational things that they do. With the use of technology, Sophia from her back garden was able to join Sophie in hers and they ran some laps together. Certainly a story of hope, determination, courage and definitely fitness. Of course, not finishing was never an option and at around 8pm last night Sophie completed her goal, a fantastic achievement. Cycling her 180km in 7 hours 29 minutes and then running her lawn marathon in 4 hours 27 minutes to complete two thirds of her Iron Man Challenge. Well done Sophie from all of us here at Banana Crumble.

If you would like to support either of these amazing ladies then look no further than our earlier articles. Congratulations to them both. Sophie still is determined to do the swim part of her ironman but is looking forward to being able to complete the real thing in Austria when the event is rescheduled. You are both nothing but absolutely awesome!!

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Something to make you smile.

On Saturday, we featured 8 year old Sophia Hyde who was raising funds for the Southend NHS after she was inspired by Captain Tom. Sophia was planning on doing 1000 laps of her garden to raise funds.

We thought we would update you to say that yesterday Sophia actually smashed her total and completed 2000 laps and also to say that her total funds raised so far have risen to almost £2300. This is amazing, as to have the perseverance and determination to complete so many laps in a garden really does take strength of character and we thought it would be fantastic to let you all know how well she has done.

Don’t forget if you would like to help Sophia with her fundraising then you can click here for details. Sophia has Cystic Fibrosis and for her, exercise is vital in keeping herself healthy but in these strangest of times to channel this into something positive is a real good news story. No doubt we will see plenty more good news and inspiring stories from Sophia over the coming months and years. I understand from Sophia’s mum that she was really pleased to be getting any coverage for what she was doing so why not add a message on our Facebook post and we will pass it on. Well done Sophia from us all.

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Sophia, what a star…

Over the last few weeks the nation has been inspired by Captain and now Colonel Tom Moore. No one can have been failed to be moved watching his birthday celebrations unfold last week. The pure joy on his face was amazing when he was given a special birthday fly past. His tale is one that has caught the nation and as Boris Johnson said he has given us all a light in the darkest of times.

Many more have been inspired by his actions and the amount of money raised and we have seen some equally incredible stories being publicised following on from his actions.

We have a really special tale to tell as we are proud to have met the young lady in question when we raised funds for the Southend Cystic Fibrosis Association at our Banana Crumb-Ball that we held last year. Sophia Hyde, age 8, was present when we handed over our cheque to the association.

Sophia, who lives in Leigh, in Essex has Cystic Fibrosis and for her, exercise and keeping fit is paramount to her keeping healthy. After hearing about Captain Tom, Sophia decided that she would run 1,000 laps of her garden to raise funds for the Southend NHS charity. She set herself the challenge and completed it in just 5 days. Not only that but she has been cycling 100 laps too. On her Just Giving Page she says:

My name is Sophia Hyde, I am 8 years old and have Cystic Fibrosis. I have been self shielding since 16th March and I wanted to challenge myself because of Captain Tom and what he has achieved. Each day as part of my physio I am going to cycle 100 laps and run 100 laps of my garden. I will be doing 1,000 laps in 5 days. I have already completed 400 laps.I am not allowed to go outside to exercise so I am doing it all in my back garden.

Sophia started with the aim of raising £100 for her charity and like Captain Tom she has surpassed that and her total is now almost £2,000. What an amazing young lady who is not only inspiring us but should be an inspiration to all those who are struggling with motivating themselves during this lockdown. Sophia is an absolute joy when you meet her and proves that determination will get you a long way. If you would like to read more about Sophia’s story or sponsor her then please click here. When I first heard that Sophia was doing this I read that she has said that she wouldn’t be able to raise funds as she was only a child. Sophia we think you have been completely proved wrong and you have raised an amazing amount of money!! Sophia is well on her way to completing a marathon with the distance covered. A great achievement in our eyes. Well done and we hope that you continue to raise funds and most importantly keep healthy.

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Happy Birthday Captain Tom

Happy Birthday Captain Tom!!!  Captain Tom has been part of the most inspirational story during this Coronavirus pandemic and everyone has followed his fundraising and sponsored walk with interest and admiration. His total stands at over £29.5 million and is still rising. The sponsored walk was initially due to be completed by his 100th birthday, which is today and after following his inspirational journey we couldn’t let today go without wishing him a happy birthday. His rendition of You’ll Never Walk Alone duetting with Michael Ball reached number one in the charts raising yet more funds.

The Royal Mail says that all stamped post up until Friday will be marked with: “Happy 100th Birthday Captain Thomas Moore NHS fundraising hero 30th April 2020”.

Royal Mail has also said it has been inundated with birthday cards for Captain Tom and that they have had to open a dedicated collection box. There have been so many cards that they have all been sent to Bedford School. This is the school that one of his grandsons attend. All the cards have been stood up and displayed. Over 125,000 birthday cards have already been received at the school. I bet there will be plenty more or should I say Moore!! Certainly a good show for the hero of Coronavirus. Happy birthday from us here at Banana Crumble.

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Captain Incredible passes the £12 million mark…

Earlier in the week we featured Captain Tom Moore who was doing a sponsored walk to raise funds for the NHS. This was a sponsored walk like no other. Captain Tom is 99 and he wanted to complete 100 laps of his garden before he reached his 100th birthday at the end of the month. He started off as we reported earlier saying he hoped to raise £10,000. His challenge has literally taken off and whilst I was researching the amount kept going up and going up and within hours he had reached a massive £1.3 million. This was the total as our article went live on the 14th April. Roll forward a few days and we thought we just had to share how much this sponsored walk has literally grabbed the nation. It is now 16th April as we are writing this and the total currently stands at over £12 million.

This is absolutely extraordinary and an amount that surely no-one could have ever dreamt of. We wonder how Captain Tom must feel at literally taking the nation with him on a journey that has summed up the courage, determination and camaraderie of the country. He is a beacon of light in dark times. What is even more remarkable is that he completed his 100 garden laps this morning but has said that whist people are still donating he will keep walking. What will the total eventually be ? Congratulations Captain Tom from all of us here and the whole nation!!

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Oh What A Night …….

We are really pleased to say that our first Banana Crumb-Ball was an overwhelming success with hopefully everyone having a great evening. We have been sorting out the monies today and are just waiting on a last auction prize before we can give a final amount but at the moment we are really pleased to say that our event on Saturday raised just under £4000. This amount of money should make a real difference to the Southend Cystic Fibrosis Association and we are looking forward to hearing how they plan on spending the money.

We all enjoyed a three course dinner, live music from The Hugh Rainey Dixieland Jazz Band which was all followed with lots of dancing to the Halfway House Resident DJ.

We would like to say a huge thank you not only to those who attended but to all those that donated raffle or auction prizes and helped to make the evening a success. Without the generosity of all of these companies raising this amazing amount would not have been possible so from all of us a huge thank you… We would like to say a really big thank you to Alton Garden Centre, Anna Holmes, Asda, Audi (Southend), BMW, C2C, Christine and Alan Hyde, Cut, Craft and Sew, Fortnum and Mason, Karl Miller, K. Mosby Financial Associates Limited, Liam Gillan Photography, Malibu Suncreams, Mangetout, Mark and Sarah Watson, Maria Nayler, Myatts Field Cocktail, Nekta Florists (Thorpe Bay), Old Southendian and Southchurch Cricket Club, Sam Brady, Sands by the Sea, Scott Hardisty and Pirtek Racing Team, Starstruck Autographs, Summerhill Garden Centre, Surf Restaurant (Chalkwell), Taylormade Chauffeurs, Validity, The Vanilla Room Hair and Beauty Salon (Hornchurch) who have all played a major part in either donating gifts for the raffle of for the fantastic auction prizes we have been able to offer.

A huge thank you to our Photographer Harry from Liam Gillan Photography – to see all our photos from the evening please click here. All photos taken on this evening have been donated free of charge by Liam to download. Simply select the photos you like and select download at the top of the page. Or alternatively you can pay for prints.

 

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Liam McHugh – still running and raising money for Cystic Fibrosis

Legend is a strong word to use and it’s probably used too often. It is often banded around in general conversation. So we have said before there are legends and there are legends. We have featured Liam McHugh on many occasions, he has been one of our Banana Chatters, we have seen how much money he has raised for The Cystic Fibrosis Trust at various stages and kept tabs on how he has done in various marathons. We keep in touch with Liam and follow how his training for the marathon goes and how his fundraising is progressing. Needless to say that the figures he talks about are eye watering and to achieve these totals is absolutely amazing.

Liam is so driven and focused and with the amounts of money he has raised must have almost singlehandedly truly made a difference to all of those with Cystic Fibrosis. He has recently announced the amount of money he raised at the London 2019 Marathon. That figure was £29,083.53. With this amount he is now on the way to raising almost £300,000 in total. We hope that when he reaches this total he will let us know and we can share that good news with everyone. This is an inspiring story where one person has made such a difference to so many people. Long may it continue Liam and those funds keep increasing and those legs keep going!

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Asda – more than a supermarket

Asda have been a great help to us here at Banana Crumble. For our launch night they donated raffle prizes including a huge bunch of bananas and are once again supporting us when we run our Banana Crumb-Ball in October. We are very grateful to them and the team that have helped us raise lots of money for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

Last Sunday Asda had given us the opportunity to run a table at their Shoeburyness Store where we could organise  a Tombola. They had helped by donating lots of prizes which got us off to a great start. With other donations we managed to get 50 prizes and had a full looking table at the start. We had absolutely no idea how this would go and after a few minutes when no one had bought any tickets we were joking about the fact we would probably have to take home all of the prizes at the end of a day.  We were absolute amazed by the fantastic support we received from the people in Shoebury and at the end of the day we raised £188.70. A fantastic achievement and yet another amount we can be proud of.

We had several highlights during the day. Firstly a huge thank you to all our friends that came and supported then also to the two children who literally made our day. One young lad won a bubble making machine that had been donated by Asda. The smile and excitement that went with that prize certainly made the whole day worth while just to have made someone so happy. The next one, almost as happy was one lad who wanted to put his pocket money in the donation box. We said why don’t you buy a ticket. He did and won a big box of chocolates. Another huge smile. People just stopped and chatted which was really nice and it was amazing just how many people had been directly affected by Cystic Fibrosis or knew someone that had been diagnosed with it. The time absolutely flew by and tickets sold quickly. We actually ran out of prizes and tickets before the shop closed but were really pleased with how the day had gone.

A huge thank you to Asda for all of their support and to let them know that their help is really appreciated. We are looking forward to your continued support for our Ball in October and also when we are planning to run another Tombola before Christmas.

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