Fundraiser in memory of Leyland baby raises £1,700

The Duke Barton Forever Fund set up by Duke's parents Rebecca and Mark held a fun day to raise money for the fund at The Priory in Leyland.'Pictured with Mickey and Pepper Pig are Rebecca and Mark with their daughter Amelia aged 3.'19th September 2015
The Duke Barton Forever Fund set up by Duke's parents Rebecca and Mark held a fun day to raise money for the fund at The Priory in Leyland.'Pictured with Mickey and Pepper Pig are Rebecca and Mark with their daughter Amelia aged 3.'19th September 2015

More than £1,700 was raised for the Duke Barton Forever Fund at a special fund-raising event at Leyland’s Priory Club.

Held on Saturday, two days before what would have been Duke’s first birthday, the event featured musical entertainment, a bouncy castle, food, a huge raffle and tombola, and a special appearances from a range of cartoon characters.

The proceeds all go towards charity Meningitis Now, following Duke’s death from the infection at only five months old.

His mum, Rebecca Smith, of Church Road, Leyland, said: “It was really good. It was busy but steady and it was really nice to know people do turn up to support a charity event.

“Some of the people who came along I don’t even know, so I’m really grateful to them.

“I’m also grateful to my partner Mark’s mum and sister, Julie Whittam and Paula Barton, as well as Cath Balshem, because they did most of the work.

“I came in at the end and put a few finishing touches in, like balloons in Duke’s name on the stage.”

Rebecca said leftover donations of sweets would be used at an upcoming fun-raiser, possibly at Hallowe’en or Christmas.

She added: “It’s hard not having Duke here for his first birthday, but we are trying to remain positive.”