Growing help for charity

THE Comet s Charity of the Year, Macmillan Cancer Support, is set to benefit from two open garden events this month. Two very contrasting gardens will be open to the public in aid of the National Gardens Scheme (NGS), which donates money raised to a numbe

THE Comet's Charity of the Year, Macmillan Cancer Support, is set to benefit from two open garden events this month.

Two very contrasting gardens will be open to the public in aid of the National Gardens Scheme (NGS), which donates money raised to a number of charities, including Macmillan.

This Saturday and Sunday, visitors are welcome to visit Croft Cottage, on Church Green in Benington, where they can enjoy an eclectic garden which combines elements of traditional cottage planting with more formal design.

This garden has been developed in three stages over the last 20 years, and includes a small Japanese maple garden with pool.


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On Sunday, June 28, in conjunction with the village flower festival, Benington Lordship Gardens will be opening its historic seven-acre gardens for the NGS.

Visitors can enjoy features including a kitchen garden, lakes, roses and spectacular herbaceous borders. The gardens also boast unspoilt panoramic views.

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Croft Cottage will be open from 1pm to 5pm each day. Admission is �3 for adults and free for children.

Benington Lordship Gardens will be open from noon until 6pm. Admission is �4 for adults, �2 for children aged 12 to 16, and free for children under 12.

Last year, Macmillan received �500,000 from the NGS income of more than �2m.

Four friends are taking on a golfing challenge to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support, after one of the four was diagnosed with cancer last year.

Brothers Darren and Jason Lovelock, 34 and 32 respectively, Andrew Collier, 30, and Frazer Triggs, 27, will be taking part in the charity's Longest Day Golf Challenge 2009 on Monday, June 22.

The foursome, who all live in Stevenage, will play four rounds of golf in one day at Knebworth Golf Club, starting at 4.45am and finishing at about 9pm, having covered about 20 miles.

Darren said: "The reason we have decided to do this is because Andrew was diagnosed with lymphoma cancer in 2008 and he found comfort in playing golf. The four of us played regularly while he was going through his treatment."

"This all happened while his partner was pregnant with their second child," he added, "but the good news is that Andrew got the all clear towards the end of 2008 - just before his son was born.

"Andrew wanted to do something for a cancer charity and this event seemed perfect for the four of us to do."

The four friends hope to raise more than �750, which will then be matched by Darren's employer. To sponsor the group, visit www.sponsorformsonline.co.uk/golfday2206.asp

On Saturday, staff at Halfords on the Roebuck Retail Park in Stevenage donned fancy dress to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support - the retail company's Charity of the Year.

Money raised on the day will be added to its central fundraising pot and counted at the end of the year.

Organised by the family of a woman with terminal cancer, a charity football match has raised more than �500 for Macmillan Cancer Support.

Shirley Jackson, of Holroyd Crescent in Baldock, was diagnosed with bowel cancer which had spread to her liver on Boxing Day last year.

The 49-year-old, her husband Patrick, and their five children and their partners, held a charity football match at Baldock Football Club on Saturday and about 150 people turned out to watch.

"It went really well. It was a great turnout and the weather stayed good," said Shirley's son, Gary.

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