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A national children’s disability charity has celebrated, with a prestigious award, the tireless support of a pair of fabulous fundraisers from the Northamptonshire village of Deanshanger.

At an awards ceremony on Thursday (February 9), Elly Hance and Rosemary Skinner were presented with the Special Mention Award by Newlife the Charity for Disabled Children’s, Medical Director Professor Michael Patton.

Newlife is the UK’s largest charity provider of specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness.

With the support of dozens of friends, family and local villagers, the strong-willed pair have raised almost £11,000 – which has helped Newlife provide vital specialist equipment for 11 disabled children in Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire over the last two years.

Elly and Rosemary are both members of Deanshanger’s Holy Trinity Church and have inspired the congregation to follow in their footsteps and support Newlife. The duo’s varied and creative fundraising ideas span from jewellery and card making to creating wooden ‘fairy doors’ and pyrography (the art of burning pictures into wood). Other fundraising events have included a car wash, sponsored walk, jewellery sales and a sing-a-thon.

Elly and Rosemary said: “From a tiny acorn of faith that we wanted to do something for these children…to the Oak Tree spreading it’s branches… please think of how you can help? ..If we can do it anyone can.”

Kevin Lowe, Newlife’s National Volunteer Manager, said: “It was such a wonderful awards event and we were humbled to be able to show Elly and Rosemary just a little of how much they mean to us and what a difference they are making to lives of very special children.”

If you are interested in volunteering your time to help local disabled children, contact Kevin Lowe – tel no 01543 439 927 or email

Newlife has supported 223 families in Northamptonshire and 189 in Buckinghamshire, with equipment totalling £486,352. For more details about how Newlife supports families in the area, go or

Right now, the charity is working with a further 10 families in the two counties, with equipment needs of £3,389. If you think you can help, go to the website and donate. Alternatively, contact the Newlife County Liaison Team on 01543 431 444, email

Pictured left to right: Elly Hance, Professor Michael Patton and Rosemary Skinner