WITH demand for support from disadvantaged people still growing, Woking Foodbank has run out of several popular items.

It particularly needs donations of UHT milk, canned fruit, jars of pasta sauce, long-life fruit juice, crisps and long-life snacks for lunchboxes, washing detergent and long-life sponge puddings.

Volunteers at Woking Foodbank sorting through much needed supplies

Babies’ nappies in sizes 3 and 4 – which are asked for most – are also urgently needed.

A spokesman for the centre said: “We have been getting busier and busier with families and others needing food and the other essentials we supply.

“We had plenty of supplies after last year’s harvest festival and at the beginning of the year, but donations fall off at this time of year.”

Donations can be delivered to The Lightbox on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10.30am to 12.30pm.

The Waitrose stores at Goldsworth Park and West Byfleet, Asda at Sheerwater, Tesco at Brooklands and Sainsbury’s at Knaphill also accept donations.

For the full story get the 2 May edition of the News & Mail

THE League Against Cruel Sports was chosen by residents to receive proceeds from the sale of second hand goods at the Martyrs Lane community tip in Woking.

Louise Morton hands over a cheque for £1,432.75 to League Against Cruel Sports chief executive Andy Knott

The animal welfare charity is a beneficiary of money taken at the Revive shop, which sells reusable items taken to the recycling centre by the public.

It was presented with £1,432.75 – 10 per cent of the quarterly proceeds from the shop, whose customers nominated the league to receive a donation.

The Martyrs Lane centre and shop are run by SUEZ Recycling and Recovery UK on behalf of Surrey County Council. The company’s Surrey communications manager, Louise Morton, visited the league’s headquarters in Godalming last week to meet its chief executive, Andy Knott, and hand over a cheque.

Mr Knott commented: “A big thank you to staff and customers at the Martyr’s Lane Revive shop, who are helping to both protect the environment and stop the persecution of animals in the name of cruel sports.”

For the full story get the 25 April edition of the News & Mail

YOU could be winning a brand-new tumble-dryer for just the price of an Easter egg, thanks to a charity event being run by RSM Domestic Appliances in Knaphill.

Donate an Easter egg at their store in the High Street, and that’s your chocolate entry to guess how many eggs are packed into the drum of the gleaming Blomberg appliance.

The magnificent grand prize of a brand new Blomberg tumble dryer

“Someone is going to win it and whoever that is are going to be over the moon. It’s just been named best tumble-dryer by Which,” said RSM managing director Steve Haydon.

“There’s no catch, no trick – just donate an egg and hopefully win a tumble-dryer. It costs £369.99, but will be free for the price of an Easter egg.”

How many eggs? The answer may surprise you

The competition was hit upon by the firm as a way to boost donations to Eagle Radio’s Egg Appeal, which helps give local, less fortunate children a happier Easter, collecting chocolate eggs to share around to more than 50 local charities and organisations, including Woking and Sam Beare Hospices, Your Sanctuary and Woking Community Mental Health Recovery Service.

If no one guesses the exact number, then nearest the total will win. If several people have the same winning guess, their names will go into a hat and the winner then chosen with a blind draw.

The competition will run until Friday 26 April. All eggs donated at RSM by 14 April will be dropped off to the Eagle Radio appeal. Any entries after that will be taken to St Peter’s Hospital for distribution there.

For more details, visit their website at

For the full story get today’s 11 April News & Mail

A TEAM from Pennypot Day Nursery in Chobham “slept rough” recently to help raise about £30,000 for Mind, the leading mental health charity in England and Wales.

Vicky Chinnapen and Carol McDonough from Pennypot Day Nursery preparing to sleep rough in a charity fund-raiser

Their employee-owned company, Childbase Partnership, which has 43 day nurseries in the South of England, donated a further £1,680 to Shelter, the charity for the homeless. The figure represents £10 for each person taking part in the fifth annual fundraising event.

Emerging from sleeping bags on flattened cardboard boxes, the team of eight fund-raisers from the day nursery in Pennypot Lane said spirits remained high despite the cold and rain.

“To be in a position to help two great causes is a great motivator,” Carol McDonough, the nursery manager, said.

“One cold, uncomfortable night is nothing really when you consider what these charities can do with the money and that we are all going home to safe, dry and comfortable beds.”

Vicky Chinnapen, the area manager, said: “Taking part in this event really changes the way you think about homelessness. How people do this every single night, in all weathers, and without an end in sight, is impossible to imagine.”

The team joined nearly 170 colleagues from sister day nurseries in the South of England for the event.

Mind, which offers specialised services, advice and support to those living with a mental health problem, was chosen in a company-wide vote as the focus for a year-long fund-raising campaign in each of the Childbase Partnership day nurseries and head office.

Last year’s drive raised a record £133,000 for Alzheimer’s Society.

A TEENAGER from Woking has found new independence and freedom after being presented with a powered wheelchair.

The chair was bought for 14-year-old Thomas Dring thanks to the fundraising efforts of customers and staff at a gaming centre.

Thomas Dring, with dad Paul and mum Solange, in his new wheelchair

Thomas, a pupil at Gordons School at West End, suffers from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a genetic disorder that causes muscle degeneration and weakness.

His wheelchair was provided thanks to Cashino Putney, one of the main fundraisers for the charity CHIPS.

CHIPS was set up on behalf of the casino and gaming industry to provide specialised powered wheelchairs for children with severe mobility problems.

Thomas’s mum, Solange, said: “Thomas can only walk short distances and tires very quickly. He has an NHS wheelchair that is in reasonably good condition but, unfortunately, he’s outgrown it.

“He’s really competitive but can’t keep up with his friends or get around school too well, which is causing him to become frustrated. All of this is causing an impact on his independence and emotional stability.”

“The powered wheelchair will be life changing for Thomas, and our whole family. It’ll give him back his independence, freedom and mobility, meaning we can spend more time outdoors as a family.”

A spokesman for Cashino Putney said: “It is such a proud moment to know that our fundraising efforts have helped Thomas be able to get around a bit easier. Walking is something that most of us take for granted, so it makes us all overwhelmed to know that he has been given more of a chance to enjoy his life as much as he can.”

CHIPS, through fundraising which includes contributions from Cashino and its parent company Praesepe, has so far raised more than £2.2m, enabling the charity to present over 520 wheelchairs to children throughout the UK.

SCHOOLCHILDREN and members of community groups raised £10,000 for local good causes in the annual Woking Rotary Club Swimathon.

Belle Dekker and Lauren Baker from Halstead School hold the Trident Honda Schools Trophy awarded by company managing director Richard Roberts, far right, Richard Sanderson, President of Woking Rotary Club, fourth left, and Woking Mayor Will Forster, second right

The event, at the Pool in the Park, has raised more than £125,000 since it began in 2007.

The Halstead School team of six raised the most, £2,000, and was awarded a trophy donated by the swimathon sponsor, Trident Honda in Ottershaw.

The swimmers had to complete more than 100 lengths in 55 minutes.

The trophy was handed to Penny Austin, the headteacher, Claire Hammond, one of the parents and pupils Belle Dekker and Lauren Baker at Hoebridge Golf Club where the sponsorship money was distributed.

The charities and groups that received the money are: the York Road Project, Your Sanctuary, Woking High School’s new computer design and technology resource, Woking Community Hospital and Dementia Carers Support.

THE annual Midnight Walk to raise funds for the Woking & Sam Beare Hospices will have a 1980s theme this year.

Top row, from left; Ali Cole-Wilkin, Susie Roberts, Jane Freeland. Bottom row, from left; Ella Jackson,  Beth Freeland and Megan Freeland.

The charity’s biggest annual fundraising event will include Susie Roberts and her Deans K-As Team who will be walking in memory of her husband Dean who was cared for by the hospice in 2016 before he died aged 54. He was the former chairman of Knaphill Athletic Football Club.

Susie said: “Deans K-As have taken part in the Midnight Walk in Deans memory every year since and we will continue to do so. Seeing all those people standing together makes me realise I’m not on my own. It’s such a fantastic event to be a part of.”

Jayne Cooper, the hospices CEO, said: “Last year we cared for over 2,000 patients, their carers and families across North West Surrey and the Midnight Walk raises the essential funds we need to continue this.”

The eight-mile Midnight Walk route starts and finishes at Woking Leisure Centre starting at 10pm on 21 June, and it is open to girls and woman aged 11 and over.

Registration is now open and if you sign up before 30 April you will enjoy the early bird entry of £15 per entrant. Walkers are encouraging all our walkers to dress in their best 1980’s gear and there will be prizes for the best dressed team and individuals. Walkers can also buy Midnight Walk T-shirts. The event is being sponsored by Trident Honda for the fourth year running and is supported by Freedom Leisure Centre.

FOR more information visit or call 01483 881752.

For the full story get today’s (21 March) News & Mail

RAIN, hail and blustering wind made running difficult, but more than 3,500 people completed the Mercer Surrey Half Marathon on Sunday.

Woking Mayoress Hannah Thompson congratulates first woman home Emma Davis, second Lesley Locks, far right, and third Lucie Custance, far left

They streamed for over three hours from Woking Park to Jacobs Well and back, in another successful staging of the largest event of its kind in the county.

Serious club runners out to set a record or a new personal best, joggers raising money for charity and children enjoying the kids’ races braved some awful weather in the day’s three events.

There was an overall total of 4,385 finishers, in the half marathon and the five and two-kilometre races.

“The runners and organisers faced some challenging conditions, especially when we were packing up,” said Hollie Light, the Surrey Half marketing manager. “But there were some excellent performances, especially from some of the teams taking part.”

Two participants – Richard Moffat and Evie Read – are waiting for confirmation that they have broken the Guinness World Record for pushing a disabled children’s buggy in a half marathon.

With Evie being pushed by Richard around the course, they took three minutes off the current world record of one hour 35 minutes.

Teenager Evie, from Headley Down, near Haslemere, has ataxia-telangiectasia (AT), a rare genetic disease. She and friend Richard, from Ascot, were raising money for the Action for A-T charity.

An innovation for entrants this year was a pre-race meditation session in Woking Leisure Centre.

“A lot of runners get anxious before a race and this helped them relax and prepare themselves in a quiet place,” said Hollie. “There were also massage and yoga sessions for runners after the race.”

For the full story and picture feature get the 14 March edition of the News & Mail

THE annual Woking Shopmobility pancake race was won by the marketing team from Woking Borough Council on a crisp but dry day.

RETURNING CHAMPION: Woking FC mascot K.C. Cat tries for a second year running as fastest mascot

They finished ahead of Fidessa, from the town centre-based recruitment company, with Seafarers, more used to serving fish and chips, coming third.

A shortage of entrants led Shopmobility to enter a team at the last minute.

“We had fun, but didn’t win our heat,” said the charity’s Joyce Browning.

Despite the slight drop in the number of competitors, there was a good crowd of spectators for the 24th pancake race in Jubilee Square, and the 12th run by the charity that hires out mobility scooters, powered and manual wheelchairs to help shoppers in the town centre.

For the full story and picture feature get the 7 March edition of the News & Mail.

CRITICALLY ill patients will be more comfortable during their hospital stay thanks to the efforts of a Byfleet-based dance school.

Susan Robinson School of Ballet raised £12,000 for a special intensive care unit bed at Royal Surrey County Hospital.

BED BOOST- Cedric Jones (centre) and Susan Robinson School of Ballet dancers Millie, 11, and Elliott, 13, with Ced’s Bed and medical staff at the Royal Surrey

The money is the proceeds of a gala production in aid of the hospital’s official charity staged by the school last year.

Susan Robinson Jones, from Byfleet, who set up the school 40 years ago, chose to support the charity after her husband, Cedric Jones, was successfully treated for cancer of the oesophagus at the hospital in 2016.

It was while Cedric recovered in the intensive care unit that the couple realised the specialist beds that helped his recovery were limited due to costing £12,000 each.

With the support of the people involved in the ballet school, Susan was determined to raise the money to buy a specialist bed for the hospital. The new bed has been named Ced’s Bed.

More than 120 dancers aged three to 18 were involved in five performances of the variety show, Reverence, at the Rhoda McGaw Theatre in Woking last April. The money was raised through ticket proceeds, a raffle and cakes sales.

“When Cedric was diagnosed, it was an incredibly tough time for us,” said Susan. But everyone we met along the way, from the surgeons to the nutrition nurses, were so positive. They have given us our lives back and we are very grateful for that.

“We wanted to do something that would make a difference to people going through what Cedric went through. If we can make that whole experience a little more comfortable, it’s worth it.

“We are overwhelmed by the support we received and want to thank everyone who came along to the gala and gave so generously.”

The hospital’s matron of critical care, Sue Herson, commented: “The beds allow for patients to be in the correct position at the early stages of recovery. This reduces complications to patients when ventilated, as well as allowing a good upright seated position for physiotherapy.

“The beds also allow patients to stand upright from the foot end of the bed, allowing them to stand and move at an earlier recovery stage. Rolling on their side to get out of bed, causes less stress, pain and discomfort.”

The Royal Surrey County Hospital Charity funds projects that provide life-saving equipment, redevelop wards, invest in staff development and fund innovative research. Find out more at or call 01483 464146.