Death of Sheffield boss sparks £110k fundraising effort

Matthew Collins, who works at Arriva Transport Solutions (ATSL) in Sheffield, stepped into the ring for a night of charity boxing on November 29 to raise money in memory of his mother who died of lung cancer.
Matthew Collins, who works at Arriva Transport Solutions (ATSL) in Sheffield, stepped into the ring for a night of charity boxing on November 29 to raise money in memory of his mother who died of lung cancer.
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Staff and friends of a Sheffield businessman who died of cancer have raised over £110,00 for the hospital which treated him.

Mike Bennett, who set up MB Advertising in Attercliffe, lost his battle against the disease in 2009.

In memory of the businessman, friends and colleagues have organised a number of fundraising events for Weston Park Hospital Cancer Charity as a thank you and to help others fighting cancer.

So far they have raised £110,724.

They have taken part in a 24-hour blindfolded walk, a 26-mile conga and a 20-mile three-legged walk.

MB Account Director, Mick Allsop, said: “We try really hard to come up with different and difficult ways of raising money, such as the 24-hour non-stop blindfold walk, the Congathon - 26 people tied

together walking 26 miles - and a 20-mile three-legged walk in a boiler suit made for two.

“Plus, we do the more traditional stuff like raffles, tuck shops, auctions and bake days.

“It gives us all such a buzz to see the total rising and next year we plan to break our own records.”

The fundraisers were recently invited to Weston Park Hospital to see how their money has been used.

Another cancer victim was the inspiration for a Barnsley man getting into a boxing ring for charity.

Matthew Collins, aged 39, from College Fields, packed a punch with Cancer Research UK when he raised £700 for the charity by taking part in an ‘Ultra White Collar’ boxing event at the Barnsley Metrodome.

The married dad-of-two took part in an eight week training programme before hitting the ring, with his fight dedicated to his mum Paula, who died of lung cancer at the age of 42 when Matthew was 22.

Matthew Collins, who works at Sheffield-based Arriva Transport Solutions, which operates non-emergency patient transport services in the city, said: “It was a fantastic night and very emotional as I was raising money in memory of my mother who died when I was 22.

“Losing your mum so young does have an effect on you and subconsciously I think it’s maybe why I chose a career in healthcare at Arriva Transport Solutions.

“I won my bout on points but more importantly the boxing night raised thousands of pounds for a cause that is close to my heart and I also feel fitter and healthier. Cancer touches everyone and money raised through events like this are vital for Cancer Research to continue its lifesaving work.”

The Wear It Pink charity, which supports breast cancer research, received £115 raised by staff at Citroen retailer, Evans Halshaw Sheffield, who organised a pink themed fancy dress day at work.

Customers at the car dealership on Penistone Road were welcomed by team members donned in their finest and brightest pink attire - from wigs to oversized glasses - on a day aimed at raising awareness of the charity and its lifesaving work.

Robert Hamilton, Dealer Principal at Evans Halshaw Sheffield, said: “It’s wonderful to be able to do something fun for such a good cause.

“There was a great atmosphere at the dealership all day – our customers were pleasantly surprised to be greeted by such brightly coloured team members – and, as a small team, collecting £115 is something we are very proud of.”

Matthew Collins, who works at Arriva Transport Solutions (ATSL) in Sheffield, stepped into the ring for a night of charity boxing on November 29 to raise money in memory of his mother who died of lung cancer.

Matthew Collins, who works at Arriva Transport Solutions (ATSL) in Sheffield, stepped into the ring for a night of charity boxing on November 29 to raise money in memory of his mother who died of lung cancer.

Rotherham fundraising group ‘Friends of the Yellowman’ has donated £4,000 to Rotherham Hospice to create a place of calm and reflection in the garden.

The group, which was formed by friends and relatives of David ‘Yellowman’ Middleton when he was treated in the hospice - is paying for landscaping work around a new Tree of Life sculpture in the grounds.

Hospice chief executive Christopher Duff said: “This generous donation will allow us to replant and landscape our valued, but sadly neglected garden, so that hundreds of hospice patients and their loved ones can enjoy a beautiful, calming outdoor oasis at this critical time, helping them to achieve the best quality of life and special memories.”

David’s wife Fiona Middleton recently visited the hospice, which cares for people with life limiting conditions, to see how the Friends of Yellowman funds will be spent.

She said: “The hospice work exceptionally hard to enable patients to have comfort and dignity with great care and comfortable rooms. But many of the patients miss their own gardens or getting outside, so the Friends are thrilled our fundraising will provide families and carers with a green space they can enjoy.”

HOW TO DONATE

Weston Park Cancer Charity - 0114 2265370, Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm.

*Matthew Collins’ online fundraising account can still be added to.

Visit Matthew’s Just Giving Page

*Rotherham Hospice’s fundrasing team - 01709 308917 or Rotherham Hospice Fundraising

* Cancer Research UK - 0300 123 1022 or visit www.cancerresearchuk.org/

* Wear It Pink - 0800 107 3104 or visit Wear it Pink