Our fundraising heroes of Huntingdonshire that took 2020 by storm

Fundraisers in Hunts

Fundraisers in Huntingdonshire reached remarkable heights to raise thousands of pounds for charity in 2020. - Credit: Archant

We have seen fundraisers in Huntingdonshire reach remarkable heights to raise thousands of pounds for charity in 2020 – from virtual events to sporting challenges. 

We take a look back at some of our most memorable heroes who went above and beyond to selflessly help others. 

Luke Claxton - raised £35,000 in lockdown 

The father-of-two from Hartford had already topped a quarter of a million-pounds for children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent. 

But when lockdown hit - he went on to raise £35,000 after setting up a number of community challenges. 

The ‘Backyard Challenge’ saw people gather in their gardens to do multiple laps and between May 29 and June 28 people walked, run and cycled 25,000 miles - the equivalent of going around the world. 

Claire Reece – won a national award for her fundraising efforts 

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The 41-year-old won ‘Fundraiser of the Year’ at the Sense Awards, organised by the national disability charity. 

It recognised her solo marathon run she took on, inspired by her son Hugo who has complex disabilities. 

Lockdown may have stopped Claire from taking part in the London Marathon, but she decided to tackle it head on in St Neots instead. She went on to raise more than £1,900. 

Mark Stocks – survived Covid-19 to take on charity walk for health care heroes 

Huntingdon carer Mark was given a 50/50 chance of surviving coronavirus.  

He went on to walk five miles to raise money for Hinchingbrooke Hospital after battling the disease. 

Mark, 47, was admitted to the hospital on May 9 where he was rushed to intensive care.  

His family were told he may not make it through the night.   

He was helped by friends Dean and Graham to complete the walk in August – raising more than £1,000. 

Buckfest organisers - more than £8,000 raised despite festival cancellation 

When this year’s hugely popular Buckfest Music Festival in St Neots had to be cancelled due to Covid-19 - organisers knew they still had to fundraise for their charity partners. 

Fundraising activities enabled Buckfest to donate £2,250 to each of their three charity partners - 3 Pillars Feeding the Homeless, HCCN (Huntingdon Community Cancer Network) and Leonard Cheshire Home Brampton. 

Team Bex - community efforts make sure that Rebecca’s fundraising legacy lives on 

In July more than 100 runners turned the streets of Huntingdonshire pink to raise money in memory of the inspirational Rebecca Griffiths. 

Mum-of-two Rebecca lost her courageous battle with cancer in 2016 aged 34. 

She managed to raise more than £80,000 for the Hunts Community Cancer Network, Hinchingbrooke Hospital and Bowel Cancer UK after setting up Team Bex. 

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic; runners decided to raise money by completing individual runs, walks and cycles in their area. 

Peter Emeleus - charity paddle for MIND raising more than £1,800 

Peter and his son Harry paddled 32 miles from Buckden to Ely to raise money for the mental health charity. 

Reflecting on the challenge, that took place in August, Peter said: “On day two, storm Francis appeared and we were battling in gusts of wind up to 40-45 miles per hour.” 

Stuie Delf – inspirationally raising money after tragic family loss 

Stuie, 13, raised an incredible £16,000 for East Anglia Children’s Hospices (EACH) in memory of his brother Fraser. 

He ran 5km every day in May after being inspired by Captain Tom Moore’s fundraising efforts. 

Stuie and his parents, Carla and Stuart, were then joined by the Duchess of Cambridge and the Duchess of Cornwall for a special video call to thank him for his fundraising efforts. 

Community efforts for Godmanchester’s Lisa Leader  

The people of Huntingdonshire have been amazing in their support for Lisa. 

Mum Lisa, who has brain cancer, asked the public to help her raise £100,000 to get lifesaving treatment in Germany earlier this year. 

In just a few months with the help of friends and family’s fundraising efforts, they are now close to reaching their target. 

Kate Pistilli – helping others when faced with her own health battle 

The 33-year-old was eight months pregnant at the time she had breast cancer, but amazingly wanted to raise money for the charities who helped her. 

She has raised £4,785 so far on her Virgin JustGiving page, for Hunts Community Cancer Network (HCCN) and Mummy’s Star.