Martin House Children’s Hospice back in the driving seat thanks to Wakefield estate agent
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Linley & Simpson, based on Northgate, stepped in after hearing news of the theft earlier this year.
It responded to its SOS for help by putting the wheels in motion to donate £20,000 to Boston Spa’s Martin House Children’s Hospice to buy a replacement van.
And the keys to the new vehicle were picked up from Linley & Simpson Chairman, Will Linley, by former Yorkshire TV and Calendar News presenter Christine Talbot, who is also a long-standing Martin House ambassador.
The hospice team relies heavily on its three vans to transport furniture and other goods across its network of shops throughout Yorkshire, or to collect donations.
Without wheels, it was unable to collect the full amount of important donations, which can raise up to £170,000 a month for children and young people with life-limiting conditions.
The vehicle was stolen from the charity’s furniture warehouse at Thorp Arch, near Wetherby, in January. Despite a widespread police and media appeal for information, it still remains missing.
Stephanie Rimmington from Martin House said: “We are thrilled to be back behind the wheel, thanks to our friends at our long-standing charity partners Linley & Simpson. Without their donation, we could have been without a van for months while our insurance claim is processed, adding to an already challenging situation amid Covid.
“Our retail team is now able to get back out on the road, collecting donations to keep our retail outlets fully stocked, and generating more income for the hospice.”
Martin House has been a charity partner of Linley & Simpson for several years, during which time its staff have already helped raise well over £100,000.
Estate agent chairman, Will Linley, said: “We shared the whole community’s shock at news of the theft. The fantastic work of the Martin House team touches the lives of so many people across Yorkshire, so we welcomed the opportunity to help.
"Many of our people have volunteered at the hospice, and our branches act as collection points for bric-a-brac that its shops can sell, so the work of the warehouse and the vans is very close to our hearts.”