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Thousands raised for ambulance staff

Members of Gareth Balmbra's family present a cheque to staff from the North East Ambulance Service.

Members of Gareth Balmbra's family present a cheque to staff from the North East Ambulance Service.

A fund-raising evening to recognise the efforts of paramedics who tried in vain to save the life of an Alnwick father collected more than £2,000.

Gareth Balmbra, 30, died in December after taking the drug MDMA – the chemical name for ecstasy – it is believed.

At a start of the month, a special event took place to raise funds for the North East Ambulance Service (NEAS).

Held at Alnwick’s Working Men’s Club, which offered the room for free, it featured entertainment from Scott Webster and The Tuckers, as well as a raffle, domino cards and collection buckets.

Gordon Webster, of MKM, donated a bathroom.

And last Friday, members of Gareth’s family, including his young daughter Lacey-jane, presented a cheque worth £2,104.63 to representatives of the North East Ambulance Service. The money will go into a central charity fund which will go to front-line ambulance crews.

Philomena Hollinghurst, junior sister in critical care at Wansbeck General Hospital, said the amount of money raised was fantastic.

Gareth’s mum, Lynette, said: “The paramedics worked so hard to save Gareth’s life, but it just wasn’t to be.”

 

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