Fundraising total is hit early

Georgia and Rachel Tweedale with Heather Marie and members of the Sleaford branch of Royal British Legion celebrate reaching their target. EMN-161220-165541001

Georgia and Rachel Tweedale with Heather Marie and members of the Sleaford branch of Royal British Legion celebrate reaching their target. EMN-161220-165541001

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The Elite Fish and Chip Company in Sleaford is celebrating after smashing its fundraising target for the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal, taking more than £10,000 in donations in just ten months.

Having chosen the Poppy Appeal as its charity of the year in March, the Lincolnshire-based fish and chip chain, which has branches in Sleaford and Ruskington, as well as Lincoln, has been spreading the word about the charitable organisation and the work it does.

Since March, Elite has been busy organising events and galvanising customers and staff to help them reach their goal.

Of the £10,000 total, around £3,000 has come from events, £6,000 from customers’ donations and £1,000 from an anonymous donor who attended the recent Vintage Christmas music event in Sleaford, where 1940s-style singer Heather Marie performed songs from the era as well as some festive classics.

In June, Elite regulars David Moulds and his wife Michaela from Welton raised a whopping £4,341.20 by running the London Marathon dressed as poppies.

Brian Harvey, Poppy Appeal organiser for Sleaford, said: “We want to thank The Elite Fish and Chip Company for their help in raising so much. Their funding will go directly to local projects we are involved with and will benefit those who have given so much for our country.”

The owner of Elite, Adrian Tweedale, said: “We are so grateful to our customers. It’s been amazing for us to have raised this much in such a short space of time. To have reached our target around two months before we had imagined we would is brilliant.

“Our customers are so generous and the cause is close to our hearts. Not only has our family got links with the armed forces, but we feel that serving customers so close to military bases in the county means we are giving something back to the community.”

Rachel Tweedale, manager at the Sleaford restaurant, added: “I want to thank not only our kind customers, but also the people who have helped us smash our target this early. This includes our staff who have given up their time to work for free during events, 1940s singer Heather Marie for providing some excellent entertainment and our good friends David and Michaela Moulds who both ran the London Marathon.

“David also cycled the Virgin 100 race in London with his bike decked out in poppies, so we want to thank him and Michaela again for their dedication.”

The Elite intends to keep fundraising until March and customers are encouraged to keep donating at its outlets.