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Thatcham friends give up drink to raise charity funds

£2.3k raised for air ambulance in two dry months

Thatcham friends give up drink to raise charity funds

THEY’VE done it again! Thatcham friends Malcolm Cook and Nigel Allen have raised more than £2,000 for charity after hanging up their pint glasses.

Their abstinence at their local, the Taste of England, for two months has provided a financial boost to the Thames Valley Air Ambulance. 

The pair built on their success of last year when they raised £1,353 for the Sue Ryder Duchess of Kent Hospice in Reading.

And although they didn’t meet their £3,000 target Mr Cook and Mr Allen raised £2,366.50 for the air ambulance.

Mr Cook and Mr Allen’s charity pledge started as a bit of banter over the bar that they felt they had to follow through on.

“Nigel just said he wanted to do it for the air ambulance and its a good cause; they don’t get any support from anything else.”

He said they had received some large donations because of the popularity of the charity and people knowing someone who it had helped.

The Thames Valley Air Ambulance is the only charity responsible for funding and operating the helicopter serving Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.

It has attended more than 15,500 medical emergencies since it was founded in 1999. The charity receives no government or National Lottery funding and relies on volunteers.

Volunteer manager for the charity, Kaite Whelpdale, said: “We are really grateful to Malcolm and co from The Taste of England for giving up their much loved alcohol to raise funds for TVAA. 

“We would not be here if it wasn’t for the generosity of individuals and our local community. Our purpose is to deliver cutting edge medical care whenever and wherever a patient needs it.

"This is costly, but listening to just one story from our former patients makes you realise how vital our service is. 

“Thank you to all at The Taste of England for the fantastic fundraising.”

Mr Cook said he had felt the health benefits of giving up the booze for two months, although he had recently ‘made up for lost time’ especially while watching Euros 2016.

The two will give up drinking again next year for another charity, which is yet to be decided.

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