54,000 thanks

HE’S done it again!

Coleraine’s Caring Caretaker has smashed all previous records following his charity sit-out outside Coleraine Town Hall this year.

Davy Boyle’s year of fundraising culminated on Christmas Eve with the news that he has raised a fantastic £54,148 - his best ever total.

A delighted Davy thanked everyone who donated throughout the year to his nine chosen charities - Chest, Heart and Stroke Association, Parkinsons Disease Society, Age Concern, Cystic Fibrosis, Children with Autism, Ulster Cancer Foundation, Zest (mental health and suicide charity), Children to Lapland Trust and Motor Neurone Disease.

Davy, who said this year’s sit-out was the toughest yet because of the wet conditions, thanked his wife Teresa and his daughters Caroline and Joanna and son Wesley for their support.

He also thanked the staff of Martha’s House and Pieces of Eight in Coleraine and everyone who brought him food and drinks during his cold sit-out.

Thanks were also given to Rev Robert McMullan and the congregation of New Row Presbyterian Church as well as Rev Roger Cook and the congregation of St Patrick’s Church in Coleraine.

“I would like to thank the PSNI for keeping me safe and the staff of the Northern Bank and my counters for their help,” said Davy.

As has become tradition with Davy, the Caring Caretaker will present his chosen charities with their cheques at an event in the New Year when he will announce the charities he will suport in 2012.

One of Davy’s well-wishers conatcted the Coleraine Times with this message: “May I beg space in your newspaper to praise this gentle giant of a man who has done this every year since 2000 and has raised a massive total of almost £300,000 for worthy causes in that time, locally based charities, as well as major ones which Davy himself feels deserve support, are the beneficiaries of his magnificent efforts.

“Few realise that Davy takes his annual leave from his job to do this and is superbly supported by his wife Theresa and a very small team of dedicated helpers and friends.

“Davy is an institution known throughout Northern Ireland, an ambassador for Coleraine and a thoroughly decent guy.”