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Skittleman visits Queen's Hospital as Clowns In The Sky celebrates being awarded £3,200 from Tesco

PUBLISHED: 16:00 30 January 2019

Lesley Davey from Tesco Roneo, Lucy Williams, Skittleman, 9 year old Nathan, Donna Byrne and Caroline Jenkins

Lesley Davey from Tesco Roneo, Lucy Williams, Skittleman, 9 year old Nathan, Donna Byrne and Caroline Jenkins

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Youngsters and adults on the Tropical Lagoon Ward at Queen's Hospital were treat to a visit from entertainer Skittleman as charity Clowns In The Sky celebrated being awarded £3,200 from the Tesco Bags of Help scheme.

Skittleman with 9 year old NathanSkittleman with 9 year old Nathan

Clowns in the Sky is a charity that aims to bring smiles to the faces of children in hospital - and the funding from Tesco means it can continue to provide portable arts and crafts, sensory equipment, and children’s entertainer sessions for those at Queen’s.

Donna Byrne, development officer for the charity submitted an application to the scheme almost a year ago, and in September and October shoppers at Tesco in Roneo Corner were able to vote for their favourite of three chosen charities as well as other branches in and around the borough, with the winner receiving a grant up to £4,000 and runners up £2,000 and £1,000.

Donna said: “2018 was a milestone year for Clowns In The Sky, it should have been a celebratory year for a very special young lady that would have turned 18 in November, but sadly this young lady - Jennifer Chambers -lost her nine month battle to a brain tumour in 2004 at the age of three.

“The legacy that Jennifer left behind which is Clowns In The Sky has however grown and grown and now brings smiles to children in hospital from Newcastle to the Isle of Wight, with Romford, Basildon, Southend and Colchester in the mix, along with Great Ormond Street, Kings College, North Middlesex and Lewisham and Greenwich.”

Lesley Davey from Tesco Roneo, Lucy Williams, Skittleman, 9 year old Nathan, Donna Byrne and Caroline JenkinsLesley Davey from Tesco Roneo, Lucy Williams, Skittleman, 9 year old Nathan, Donna Byrne and Caroline Jenkins

The charity also gives small grants to families if they have a child with a brain tumour to help with the smaller things and make the bigger things easier to cope with. Donna continued “Tesco and their customers have helped us to fund the 3-4 monthly refills of the existing three trolleys at Queen’s as well as providing them with a large batch of activity and teen books, and funds to pay for a monthly visit from the very funny and talented ‘Skittleman’, children’s entertainer for the whole of 2019, who we contract from a charity named POD.

“A huge thanks to Tesco, and from Roneo Corner a special thanks to the community champion Lesley Davey who supports the charity in a variety of ways with prizes and promotion too.

“And thanks to the wonderful play specialists and staff on the ward for our warm welcome and the children and parents too.”

For more information on the charity visit www.clownsinthesky.org

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