KIND-HEARTED shoppers and staff have helped Ankerside Shopping Centre raise more than £1,700 for Macmillan Cancer Support.
Taking part in the annual World’s Biggest Coffee Morning event, stores showed their support by offering raffle prizes, donating cakes and holding competitions and games.
Visitors to the Tamworth shopping centre on Saturday were treated to a party atmosphere throughout with celebrations going on within the shops as well as on the main concourse
Stalls were set up with a tombola, lucky dip and raffle as well as both ‘name the teddy’ and ‘guess the number of sweets in the jar’ competitions.
In all £1,704 was raised on the day, with an extra £124 coming from a cake sale by the team at Ankerside’s floristry stall Mrs Brown’s Flowers.
Ankerside Deputy Manager Jeff Wigley said: “The Macmillan Coffee Morning has been really well attended and we can’t thank our customers enough for their generosity and support.
“So many people are affected by cancer these days and nearly everyone knows someone who has been helped through those difficult times by the excellent team at Macmillan so we were all keen to help give something back.
“They do an amazing job and if we can help them to help others deal with cancer and have a good, fun day at the same time then so much the better.”
One shopper happy to show her support was Rachele Young who was in Ankerside to meet her mum when she saw that the charity event was on.
She said: “Once I realised it was for Macmillan I thought I’d better support it as my nan was always a big supporter of them over the years and since she passed away we’ve all tried to keep that going by doing a bit ourselves.
“She had a collecting tin in the house and all our change went in it so it’s the least I can do. We all know people who have either passed away from cancer or survived it so it’s close to everyone’s hearts these days”
Rachele, who works at a GP’s surgery in Kingsbury, knows only too well just how many people are affected by the disease and was happy to help the charity, which provides support to those living with cancer.
The 20-year-old, who lives with her parents in Dosthill, snapped up plenty of tombola tickets, and was lucky enough to walk away with armfuls of prizes.
She said: “I won absolutely loads! I must have about six soft toys now including one giant teddy bear. It’s my 21st next week so I’m going to keep that as an early birthday present to myself but I’m not sure what I’m going to do with the rest.
“It’s all for a good cause though,” she added.
One of the main draws for the event, who marked the 25th anniversary of the Macmillan Coffee Morning, was the delicious strawberry and cream sponge cake made by the patisserie experts at Druckers Café, which sold out at £1.50 a slice.
Claire Morden from Macmillan came along and was delighted at the response from both customers and businesses taking part.
She said: “It has been really busy and people were queueing for the tombola and winning all sorts from teddy bears to chocolates.
“The raffle tickets sold really well because we were very kindly given a camera as the first prize by Canon. It’s just great that the Coffee Morning has really taken off over the years – there are so many people holding them now which is brilliant for us at Macmillan.
“It’s our biggest event of the year and last year it raised in the region of £25 million which was huge. But then, this is the anniversary year so we might even beat that!”
Claire added: “The team at Ankerside are amazing. We’ve worked with them on this for the last four years and everyone involved has been great from the security staff right up to the management.
“We can’t thank them, or their customers, enough for their continued help and support.”