Fund-raisers braved the wintry weather to sleep rough for charity

The sleepout at The Alnwick Garden.
The sleepout at The Alnwick Garden.

Braving cold and wet conditions, hardy fund-raisers who swapped the comfort of their beds for a night of sleeping rough have raised thousands of pounds to help tackle homelessness and poverty.

Armed with layers of clothing and a sleeping bag, the big-hearted group of business leaders and chief executives spent Monday night underneath the stars at The Alnwick Garden, enduring plummeting temperatures and damp weather.

The sleepout at The Alnwick Garden.

The sleepout at The Alnwick Garden.

Their selfless efforts aimed to raise awareness of homelessness and poverty and collect vital funds to help. And by Tuesday morning, around £12,000 of donations had poured in for the cause.

Some of the money will go to The Alnwick Garden Trust to support its Young Enterprise Programme, which aims to take disenfranchised young people and give them business skills.

The cash will also go to other local good causes, such as The Salvation Army Christmas Present Appeal, The Alnwick District Food Bank and The Alnwick Debt Centre.

A portion of the funds will be given to national charity CEO Sleepout, to help it alleviate the effects of poverty and homelessness across the UK.

During the event, Ramside Event Catering set up a pop-up soup kitchen. The evening also featured two special guests.

The first was Jenna, who had travelled from Manchester to tell her story of living on the streets and dealing with mental illness and drug addiction.

The second was Tom, who – with his wife and a group of volunteers – runs the Friends of Grainger Street, an organisation which spends time with people sleeping rough providing advice, food and blankets.

The speeches gave a valuable insight into the horrors of homelessness, before the fund-raisers experienced the tough conditions for themselves.

People who took part in the sleepout donated their blankets and sleeping bags to The Friends of Grainger Street and they will be distributed shortly.

If you would like to donate any items, leave them at Gardeners Cottage at The Alnwick Garden and they will be passed on.

There is still time to make a cash donation by visiting