Christmas Eve bell-ringing event raises more than £10,000 for cancer support service

A festive bell-ringing event set up by two Scots women which went global has raised more than £10,000 for a cancer support service.

Saturday, 26th December 2020, 3:20 pm

Thousands across the world took part in The Worldwide Santa’s Christmas Eve Jingle, organised by Falkirk woman Lauren Sinclair and friend Terri Niven, as families gathered on their doorsteps to ring bells at 6pm.

Having attracted more than 285,000 online followers, the event broke through the five-figure fundraising barrier for Maggie’s Forth Valley this morning (Saturday).

It’s hoped the final total will pay for a week’s care at the Larbert-based service so staff can continue to provide care for those battling the disease amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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Lauren Sinclair (red T-shirt), founder of the Worldwide Santa's Christmas Eve Jingle Facebook page, took part in the event with family, friends and neighbours. Picture: Michael Gillen.

Ms Sinclair, 36, who confirmed plans for a similar Hogmanay event are now in place, said: “It’s amazing.

“We’ve paid for four days at Maggie’s so far but it’s looking likely we’ll have enough to pay for a week.

“When we first started it, the donations came in massively but then they stopped. I put a final push out a couple of days ago. At that point, we had £3000.

“On Christmas Eve it went like wildfire and never stopped. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

“We’ve got a lot of people in America and Canada sending donations for our local Maggie’s simply because they say they’ve had an amazing build-up to Christmas through the page.

“We’re going to keep the page open and we’re hoping to do a 6pm jingle on New Year’s Eve just to get people in the spirit, even if we’re heading back into lockdown. The page is going to be open for the entire year. We’re not changing the name.

“We just want to say a massive thank you to every single person, from local people to well beyond.”

A Facebook post by Maggie’s Forth Valley read: “We have been overwhelmed by the generosity of everyone in the Worldwide Santa’s Christmas Eve Jingle group.

“As well as sharing much-needed Christmas magic, you have raised an incredible £10,308 for Maggies Forth Valley.

“We are here to support anyone affected by a cancer diagnosis and we are honestly blown away by the love and support we have received from this group, we cannot thank you all enough.”

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