Dorchester pub regulars turn whiskers into televisions and an Xbox for children's ward

Bournemouth Echo: CHEERS: Rick Green, centre, Kingfisher Ward play specialist Julie Goodall, to his left, and Jean O’Callaghan with darts players and pub regulars of the Sydney Arms CHEERS: Rick Green, centre, Kingfisher Ward play specialist Julie Goodall, to his left, and Jean O’Callaghan with darts players and pub regulars of the Sydney Arms

A PUB fundraiser promises to lift the spirits of children at Dorset County Hospital.

Darts players and regulars at the Sydney Arms in Bridport Road, Dorchester came up with their own answer to Movember with 14 men growing a full beard for 30 days, each with a distinctive style.

Their combined efforts raised an impressive £1,269.49 and they used the funds to buy 10 televisions with DVD players and an Xbox with games for the Kingfisher Ward at Dorset County Hospital.

Darts player Karl Burden and Sydney Arms landlord Rick Green came up with the idea and they were amazed at how successful it was.

Mr Green said: “It was just one of those conversations when we said we would all do something and that’s how it started.

“We raised more than we thought we would.”

Mr Burden said the fundraisers collected sponsorship and then met up at the end of the 30 days sporting their uniquely designed beards.

He added: “It started out as a challenge between a couple of us and then said, ‘let’s do it properly’.

“Around 14 of us took part.”

Lorraine Lovett, who plays for one of the darts teams and is also a secretary at the hospital’s maxillofacial department, got in touch with the Kingfisher Ward when she heard the men were doing the fundraiser to see what the unit needed.

She said: “They said they needed TVs and an Xbox so instead of donating money we decided we would buy them.”

Chief executive at Dorset County Hospital Jean O’Callaghan was full of praise for the fundraisers.

She said: “They have made an incredible effort and what a very lucky ward Kingfisher is to have these TVs and DVD players.

“It’s really appreciated and we feel quite amazed that a darts team has raised this.”

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