A headteacher has been given 18,609 very good reasons to complete the Brighton Marathon in a green wig.
That's how much money students at St Wilfrid's School have raised for Macmillan Cancer Support in Michael Ferry's name.
Mr Ferry will tackle the 26.2- mile marathon on Sunday (April 9). He had promised his students he would wear a green wig if they managed to raise £9,000.
The youngsters sailed past that mark on their own, raising £9,609.80, and then saw the total doubled thanks to the generosity of nine staff at Barclays. The bank runs a scheme called Matched Fundraising in which it allocates £1,000 to staff members to match money raised for charity. Nine staff members choice to support the St Wilfrid's effort.
Describing the fundraising efforts of his students, which have been ongoing since September, Mr Ferry said: "It's been just fantastic to see so many people throwing themselves into it. To think that we've got almost £20,000 is just incredible, absolutely incredible.
"I'm just speechless really - and that doesn't happen very often. That's a phenomenal amount of money."
Among the fundraising events were a non-uniform/wear something green day, which raised £1,584.22. The Christmas raffle brought in £1,653.45, and the bucket collections around the school added £953.50.
In the classrooms, a sixth-form cake sale raised £696.71, there was £40.97 from tutor group 10WB, £129.36 from 7HA and £102.20 from 8WD.
Former student Tom Lay now works as Macmillan's fundraising manager for the south east. Mr Lay said the work of the St Wilfrid's students had been "incredible journey I continue to be proud of".
Ritchard Burrows, of Barclays, who has two daughters at St Wilfrid's, said: "When we had the opportunity to take part we leapt at the chance. I went back and spoke to the team and literally every member of the team was on board and the results are in that cheque. We managed to get nine people who wanted to use their Matched Fundraising to help the school raise money.
"It's the largest Matched Fundraising we've done in our local community. It's a fantastic cause and a fantastic school and we're proud to support them."
How will the money be spent?
By 2020, nearly one in two people will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime, and there will be 3million people living with cancer in the UK.
The money raised by St Wilfrid's could fund:
A Macmillan nurse for 667 hours, seeing 3,000 patients;
The helpline for 12 hours;
51,000 copies on the Cancer Guide - one for every person diagnosed with cancer in Sussex for five years.
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