Hospital charity aims to raise £1m

SALES of merchandise to raise a million pounds for the maternity unit at Hinchingbrooke Hospital have really taken off, according to the owner of the Raptor Crafts shop at the Raptor Foundation in Woodhurst. Lynne Pope said wrist bands and pens created by

SALES of merchandise to raise a million pounds for the maternity unit at Hinchingbrooke Hospital have really taken off, according to the owner of the Raptor Crafts shop at the Raptor Foundation in Woodhurst.

Lynne Pope said wrist bands and pens created by the Hands for Hinchingbrooke campaign had been selling like hot cakes over the weekend.

Mrs Pope said: "There are wrist bands in two sizes. The children's bands say: 'Born at Hinchingbrooke' and the adults' bands say 'Choose Hinchingbrooke'."

The campaigners, who launched the not-for-profit trust company to raise money to save the maternity unit, are also hoping to produce high visibility jackets, mugs and teddy bears, as well as clothing aimed at the youth market, sweat tops, t-shirts, track pants and hoodies with the campaign's logo.

A founder of the campaign, Mike Gough, a former Unison secretary, whose wife is the union's branch secretary at the hospital, told The Hunts Post there was unofficial support for the campaign from the hospital, which had said it would welcome funds, though this was not a direct hospital campaign. Hands for Hinchingbrooke is hoping to achieve charitable status within the next eight months.

Mr Gough said supporters would be holding indulgence evenings and coffee mornings and the campaign also hoped to put on a rock concert at the Commemoration Hall in Huntingdon High Street in June.

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He said other suppliers of the wrist bands and pens, so far, were the Rina Roo gift shop in East Street, St Ives, the Methodist Church in Huntingdon and the GP surgery in Bourn.

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