80th might be a rough night
Toby to sleep on bench for homeless funds
When Toby Lowery wakes up on a park bench on Sunday, it’ll be her birthday.
She’ll unzip her sleeping bag and walk across the road to her house and into her nice comfy bed for a few hours’ sleep after a tough night.
The Dunscore granny doesn’t need to sleep rough the night before her 80th – she’s doing it to raise money for a charity close to her heart.
And Toby’s not worried about what the unpredictable November weather might bring. The plucky pensioner said she can deal with the cold ... although cats are a different story.
She said: “I’m not crazy or foolhardy, but almost 30 years ago I gave up my teaching job to teach in Romania. There I saw many people sleeping in the street and I was horrified. Today, the situation is worse in this country.
“On Remembrance Day I shall be 80. I’m not a party person but I’d like to mark the occasion with a little style, so I’ve decided to sleep rough myself.
“I’ve been very lucky in life and now I’d like to help someone else, so hopefully this will raise something for the Mustard Tree, a homeless charity in my home town, Manchester.
“I’ll be honest, I’m nervous about sleeping away from my home even though it’s not very far.
“I can deal with the cold, but I’m very scared of cats and, when I see one, I embarrass myself by screaming and jumping up on tables.
“However, I’ve said I’ll do it now and I can’t back out.”
Husband John, 84, thinks his wife is mad, but her son, also called John, is proud of her for taking on the challenge.
He said: “I told her I think it’s brilliant, as long as she wakes up the next morning. I’ve set up a Justgiving page for donations, although somebody actually offered her £50 not to do it.”
Toby added: “I know it’s not going to be comfortable sleeping on a bench near the village war memorial and I really hope I don’t roll off in the middle of the night.
“But this is important to me and I want to raise awareness of homelessness and some money for charity, especially on Armistice Day as a lot of exservice personnel are homeless these days. It’s just for a night, some people aren’t as fortunate.” To donate, visit https://www.justgiving.com/ fundraising/john-lowery3?fbclid=IwAR07esv2_ zY9ZNHjUpV8L5W_Lf4Y_ Drm0YGLGUzZlUdoKNhUdsKOx7xcyHE
Sleepover with a difference Toby Lowery will be on a park bench