Festive recycling scheme turns trees into £90,000
A Macclesfield MP has praised volunteers for raising tens of thousands collecting old and unwanted Christmas trees.
MP David Rutley thanked those who took part in the annual tree recycling drive on Saturday and Sunday, January 9 and 10, to raise money for East Cheshire Hospice.
Now in its 17th year, the collection has raised more than £90,000 through residents paying to have their Christmas trees removed at the end of the festive period.
Following a briefing and bacon butty at Prestbury Village Hall on the Saturday morning, volunteers were dispatched to collect the trees.
In total, more than 6,500 trees from more than 2,000 different roads were collected over the weekend.
David was on hand at the send off on Saturday morning, and the Lord Lieutenant for Cheshire, David Briggs MBE attended on Sunday, adding his support to the team.
The total amount raised is still being finalised, but co-organiser Peter Chapman said: “With a final forecast of over £90,000 being raised for the hospice this year, we continue to be amazed and delighted at the support that has been given across our 250-square mile collection area.
“This means the collection has now raised more than £670,000 from what started with one £10 note.
“Our hospices provide essential and amazing care to many people with life limiting illnesses - we are very pleased to be able to support them through what has become an annual community recycling event.
“We now hope that this feels like a regular part of Christmas for everyone involved.”
Rob Barrow, chair of trustees at East Cheshire Hospice, added: “The tree collection is the hospice’s largest fundraising event of the year and we are incredibly grateful to everyone who supports it.
“We rely on the community to pay 80 per cent of the costs to keep the hospice open, so events like this are essential to ensure we can continue to provide essential care and support to those with life limiting illnesses.
David said: “It was great to be able to support such a fantastic local community event, which brings so many people together to raise money for our highly valued hospice.
“I would like to thank all the organisers and volunteers who helped to take part in the collection, and made it possible for so many households to contribute.”
●● Celebrating their success are, from left, Jennette Brown, Age UK East Cheshire services manager, deputy chief executive Dominic Anderson, Joanna West, information and advice officer, David Shoesmith, information and advice volunteer and Jane Bellfield, supporting you officer
●● David Rutley MP with Rob Barrow, chair of trustees at East Cheshire Hospice