Hot air balloon rides raise money for school trip

Several businesses in Rutland joined forces with a local school on August 19 to raise money for an orphanage in Africa. Among the fundraising ventures were hot air balloon rides, craft and jewellery stalls and a number of bands.

Catmose College in Oakham intends to send 28 pupils to Ghana next year to install a safe water supply and build an orphanage in the village of Eugemot. However, they must fund the expedition themselves.

Enterprising Year 10 students Henry Toogood and Joseph Miller, both 14, approached local businesses to support the fundraiser, with builders Linden Homes not only meeting the cost of the PA system hired for the event but also donating another £250. The raffle raised £500, with prizes of hot air balloon rides donated by Moore’s Estate Agents, days out at Delta Force Paintballing and Barnsdale Gardens, and a number of gift vouchers.

Musician Henry organised [email protected] with the help of Rutland County Museum, signing up four bands to play during the afternoon. Former Catmose students headlined with their band Strike Up the Colours, supported by folk bands Centre Excuse and The Tin Pigeons and rock group Locked Out.

Over 500 people attended the event, bringing a picnic to eat in the park at Cutts Close in Oakham, from where the hot air balloon rides were launched. Previous fundraising events organised by Catmose students for the orphanage fund have included chopping logs for firewood, recycling newspapers into bags and making and selling food.

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