Car boot sale raises over £2,000 for Samaritans

The fund-raising car boot sale at Roger and Val Denny’s Old Rectory at Dunseverick, Bushmills, surpassed all expectations.

The turnout of sellers, buyers and supporters had a delightful morning’s weather, looking for bargains, bantering and enjoying the tasty catering in the most comfortable of surroundings.

The generous couple have cut down the number of events to three this year and those who have experienced the atmosphere and food previously didn’t allow the opportunity of a pleasant day out to slip past.

There were over 70 vehicles trading on the extensive lawns, the other half of which allows for disabled parking so that those less mobile can be involved in this popular occasion.

A local landowner made a large field adjoining the rectory available for free car parking for the remainder of those attending. There was a raffle of prizes some having been donated by Smugglers Inn, Bushmills, Aghadowey Foods, Coleraine, Watertop Open Farm and McCaughan’s Chemists, both Ballycastle.

Val and Roger have a regular team of willing helpers who ‘step up to the plate’ for every sale that is being organised and their experience and helpful, cheery welcome make everyone feel at home in the pleasant surroundings of the house and grounds.

The giant marquee brought from England last year offers extensive facilities for stalls and an inviting entrance to the ‘conservatory’ catering area. The roast beef and roast pork sandwiches ran out late in the day, as did the home baking and preserves.

The day was in aid of the local Coleraine and District Samaritan branch. Their volunteers had a large table of donated items for sale and the members were overwhelmed by the reception they received from those present and their open generosity.

It was a record-breaking car boot sale and the net sum given to the Samaritans was £2150.

Samaritans is a charitable organisation who offer confidential emotional support to those suffering feelings of distress, despair or who are suicidal.

They are a self-funding organisation and rely on donations from the community to continue to provide the service they have done for the past 40 years in the Coleraine and district area.

The Branch Chairman said: “We are very appreciative of the past and continuing support we have received from Roger and Val Denny and all others in the local community.

“The local branch takes between £25,000 and £30,000 per year to operate. All the volunteers are unpaid. We cannot thank enough all those who help in whatever way they can and hope we can rely on their continued support now and in the future.”