A FARMER has pulled out all the stops for Macmillan despite the coronavirus pandemic.

Claire Redhead, a farmer from Cold Kirby, near Thirsk, hosted her first Macmillan Coffee Morning in 2016.

Since then, Claire, who organises the event with her friend Sarah Seilly, has raised more than £5,600 for Macmillan, and she wasn’t going to be put off by an international pandemic.

Claire, who held the event in September, said: “I get such a buzz out of hosting our Macmillan Coffee Morning, I wasn’t going to be put off by the pandemic.

“It definitely added complications, but we were determined to hold our event and do it safely.

“We ensured that everyone was strictly socially distanced and only allowed six people into the barn at a time. We’re lucky we have the space on the farm.

“Despite these challenging times, the whole community turned out and we were able to raise £2,942 this year, I couldn’t believe the generosity of local people.”

Claire and Sarah were supported by local craftsman John Sisson, who donated a dining table and benches made in his distinctive horseshoe design.

The table was displayed in Barkers furniture store in Thirsk throughout September, before being raffled off to the lucky winner. The raffle contributed more than £700 to their unbelievable total.

Claire is motivated to fundraise for Macmillan after the support her family received when her mum was diagnosed with cancer and died in 2009.

She said: “Nobody is untouched by cancer and I’m motivated to support Macmillan because of the support they gave my mum when she had cancer.

“The Macmillan nurses listened to what was important to my mum, towards the end of her illness she was unable to get up and down the stairs; but she wanted to sleep in her own bed.

“The nurses organised a grant which meant we could install a stairlift, this meant the world to mum.”

Sarah, who organises the event with Claire, works for Olympus Keymed Group, and the company agreed to donate £250 towards the event.

Adele Burrough, wo is Macmillan fundraising manager for Yorkshire, said: “Times are tough at the moment for everyone especially those that are living with cancer, we want to say a massive thank you to Claire, Sarah and John for their fundraising effort, as well as to everyone who has supported their fundraising, it’s true to say Macmillan have never needed the money more.”

Macmillan has launched an appeal in Yorkshire and every donation received will stay in the region to give vital support to those who need it.

To find out more and make a donation, visit macmillan.org.uk/yorkshireappeal or phone 0300 1000 200.