Young fundraiser gets Royal seal of approval

One of Pendleside’s youngest fundraisers who handmade more than 100 Christmas decorations to sell has received the seal of approval from Her Majesty the Queen.

Eight-year-old Jessica Thornber, from Colne, spent around five months creating wire-framed snowflakes with threaded beads to sell, with a helping hand from her mum Victoria and grandma Anne.

The Laneshaw Bridge year three pupil sold her decorations at her school fair and across her mum’s social media platforms, raising £170 for the hospice before sending her final creation to the Queen in time for Christmas.

She received a letter of thanks from Sandringham House, saying: “The Queen greatly appreciated your kind thought in sending her one of the beautifully crafted snowflake Christmas decorations which, with the help of your mother and ‘Grandma Anne’, you made and sold.”

Jessica’s mum Victoria said: “My grandma passed away at Pendleside and we’ve been fundraising as a family ever since to show our appreciation. It was after Jessica had been to a birthday party and seen her friends making these wire frames that she wanted to do her own thing and remember her great grandma Joan.

“It’s made me really proud to see her persevering with this project as it took us around five months to make enough to sell. You could see she was pleased with herself when people came to buy the snowflakes and to receive a letter of thanks from the Queen is the icing on the cake really.”

The hospice recently brought together its team of young fundraisers to thank them for playing their part in raising £14,846 for the hospice last year.

All the children were treated to a party at the hospice, complete with a visit from Home Safari who brought along a selection of animals for the children to meet.

Jessica took a particular shine to a chinchilla called Barney, saying: “We all got to hold the different animals but Barney was my favourite. I was really excited to get my letter from the Queen, I hope she liked her snowflake.”  

Pendleside fundraiser Leah Hutchinson, who arranged the party, said: “It was a fantastic event which allowed all our wonderful young fundraisers to get together and talk about their achievements in the past year and to celebrate their efforts in raising funds for the hospice.

“It was the first party we’ve hosted and I think it’s really important to show them they’re valued. The amount each of them raised doesn’t matter to me, it’s the effort they’ve all put in. They’ve all got their own little reasons for fundraising and deserve the same amount of credit.”