The nation’s heart charity has released its list of the top 10 quirkiest fundraisers of the past 12 months, revealing the wild and wonderful things people have done to raise money for life saving research.
This year’s top 10 included a walk up Mount Snowdon in wedding dresses, miniature horse shows and a 24 hour fudge making marathon.
Now the BHF is encouraging others to follow in their footsteps, and do their own thing to help raise vital funds in the fight against heart disease. Get your free fundraising pack at bhf.org.uk/doyourthing
Around 7 million people in the UK are living with heart and circulatory disease, but the BHF is committed to funding half a billion pounds of research across the UK by 2020 to help beat heart disease.
The BHFs Top 10 Quirky Fundraisers of the Year:
- Bridal Walk – Maxine Beech, from Shropshire, raised over £6000 by climbing Mount Snowdon with 30 friends wearing wedding dresses and hen-do outfits. The event was in memory of her dad who she lost to a heart attack before he could walk her down the aisle.
- Jail break – Two Scottish pensioners took on a jail break challenge, to get as far away from Perth Prison as possible in a day to fundraise.
- Fudge Making Marathon – Two sisters from Cornwall completed a 24 hour fudge making challenge. They produced over 150kg of fudge in a single day – which is an average weeks’ worth. The BHF is a cause close to their hearts, as one of the sisters suffered several cardiac arrests as a child due to a heart condition.
- Dog Sled Racing - Sixteen year old Shauna turned her hobby into a fundraiser when she asked friends to sponsor her to do a dog sled rally across tough terrain. Shauna had open heart surgery at 12 years old and her parents said she could start racing her Siberian Huskies when she recovered from her operation.
- Queen of Fancy Dress - Over the last 20 years Michele Preston has helped to raise over £20,000 for charity by dressing up in dozens of handmade fancy dress outfits at the Tesco store in Worcester where she works. Highlights have been the Queen of Hearts and Dorothy, with her dog Poppy as Toto.
- Drawings for Donations - Aspiring storyboard artist Ben, 18, used his talent to fundraise for the charity after his grandmother had a heart transplant. He offered to draw portraits of everyone who donated over £10, he's raised over £200 and produced 20 portraits so far.
- Miniature Horse Show – Chloe Lewis, 21, combined her love for miniature horses with her passion for fundraising, to organise a miniature horse show in aid of the BHF. Over 40 ponies entered the event, raising over £1,300 for heart research.
- 33 Signatures – Dan Poole is a man on a mission. Since January 2014 he has been collecting signatures from the 1993/94 Manchester United team to auction for the BHF. He was inspired to do so after the death of Les Sealey, the team’s goalkeeper, and his own fathers heart attack. The season review book has travelled over 22,000 miles and been signed by 26 of the 33 players on the list.
- Bamboo Bikers – A Welsh cycling duo completed a 230 mile bike ride on homemade bikes they built from bamboo. Cardiologist Dr Adrian Raybould, and cycling friend Dan Holley, rode from Wales to London, raising over £6,400 for the charity.
- 24 Hour Walk: No Stopping – Three friends from Grimsby walked for 24 hours straight, covering 72 miles and raising over £1,350. The trio didn’t stop once during their walk, an impressive feat.
Donna Spriggs Elliott, Head of Community Fundraising at the British Heart Foundation, said: “It is only because of people like our top 10 quirky fundraisers that we can continue funding our life saving research into beating heart disease.
“It’s great to see all the weird and wonderful ways our fundraisers raise money, and we are so incredibly grateful for the time and effort that they put in and the people who support them. By following in their footsteps you too could join our fight against heart disease and help us save lives.”
The BHF relies entirely on supporters to fund life saving research, so this year we are asking the public to do your thing - whether it’s baking, swimming, or something completely different, and turn it into a fundraiser.
Get your free fundraising pack