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Welling church’s appeal for emergency services raises more than £6,000

PUBLISHED: 07:00 19 October 2018

The Ridley Bear ‘999’ Appeal celebrated a wonderful finale last weekend with a special service at Bishop Ridley Church. Photo: David Snow

The Ridley Bear ‘999’ Appeal celebrated a wonderful finale last weekend with a special service at Bishop Ridley Church. Photo: David Snow

Archant

A Welling church was delighted to present representatives from the emergency services with cheques totalling an amazing £6,054 after its annual teddy bear charity appeal.

The Ridley Bear ‘999’ Appeal celebrated a wonderful finale last weekend with a special service at Bishop Ridley Church. Photo: David SnowThe Ridley Bear ‘999’ Appeal celebrated a wonderful finale last weekend with a special service at Bishop Ridley Church. Photo: David Snow

The Ridley Bear 999 Appeal celebrated a wonderful finale last weekend with a special service at Bishop Ridley Church attended by the Mayor of Bexley Cllr Brian Bishop, the Mayoress Cllr Christine Bishop, councillors Nigel Betts, Val Clark and Louie French and representatives from the emergency services, smashing its initial appeal target.

All the fundraising went in support of the London Ambulance Service Benevolent Fund, The Fire Fighters’ Charity and the Metropolitan & City Police Orphans Fund. This meant each charity received a cheque from the Mayor for £2,018.

The Mayor of Bexley said “I greatly value the work of the emergency services in Bexley and was delighted to present cheques on behalf of the Ridley Bear ‘999’ Appeal to these three fine charities.”

Children from Bishop Ridley Church, Bishop Ridley CofE Primary School, and the local Guiding and Scouting groups in Falconwood, had worked together all year to fundraise for the Ridley Bear 999 Appeal.

Appeal Co-ordinator David Snow added: “Such sad events in Westminster, Borough Market, Grenfell Tower and the Manchester Arena have once again highlighted the importance of our emergency services.

“Everyone wanted to recognise the bravery and commitment of the emergency services and to pay tribute in some way for the very demanding work that they do.”

Fundraising events have been running all year and included a mass sleepover in the church, a quiz night, children’s cinema evening, a cycling challenge to ride from John O’Groats to Lands End on exercise bikes, and a car pool karaoke singalong with our local vicar.

More than 300 Ridley Bear mascot bears were sold, wearing their specially knitted emergency service uniforms representing either the Fire Brigade, the Ambulance Service or the Police services.

Friends of Ridley Bear have also been posting photos on social media of their Ridley Bears in various locations both locally, up in London and from as far away as Australia, the Phillippines and Barbados.

Speakers from the emergency services have also been visiting the children’s groups and the school during the year to teach them more about their work.

Andrew Hall Chairman LAS Benevolent Fund said: “The London Ambulance Service Benevolent Fund would like to place on record our sincere gratitude to the Ridley Bear Appeal for supporting us over the last year.

“It’s been great to see so many young people being involved to raise money for the emergency services”

Kerry James fundraiser at The Fire Fighters Charity added: “Thanks to the Ridley Bear Appeal for supporting The Fire Fighters Charity through their fundraising year, it was great to see so many young people taking part and recognising the work of the fire service.

“The money raised will go a long way to helping us continue our support to the fire service communities across the UK.

And finally, Malcolm Cooper of the Met and City Police Orphans Fund said: “The Metropolitan and City Police Orphans Fund are truly grateful to all who took part and supported the Ridley Bear Appeal.

“Young people continually get bad press but this appeal demonstrates their commitment to the wider society and they should be rightly proud of their achievement. Thank you on behalf of all Police Officers”

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