Widow prepares to take fundraising to next step

Bucks Free Press: Dave Hart Dave Hart

A WIDOW who organised a disco for a hospice charity to thank them for caring for her late husband is hoping to add to the £1,400 she's raised after signing up to a Midnight Walk event.

Natalie Hart raised the money for the Hospice of St Francis, where her husband Dave died of cancer last year aged 42.

An 80s-themed disco at Chesham United FC in memory of Mr Hart, a retained firefighter at Chesham fire station, raised the cash for the hospice.

And now Mrs Hart and a group of her friends and family have pledged to raise more money for the Berkhamsted-based charity after signing up for their annual Midnight Walk.

The 44-year-old, of Mount Nugent, Chesham, said: "The care Dave received at the hospice was outstanding, as was the aftercare my daughter Megan and I received. As a family, we can’t thank the hospice staff enough for all they’ve done for us and for Dave in his last months and we’re delighted to be able to give something back. He thought the Hospice was a smashing place and his wish was for us to raise as much as possible."

Mrs Hart, a supervisor at The Beacon School in Chesham Bois, added: "The disco was just brilliant. More than 150 people came and everyone was dancing. Dave would have been out on that dancefloor dancing away with all his old mates.

"It would have been his 44th birthday on May 1 and he loved 80s music, so an 80s disco was the perfect way to celebrate his life and a great way to say thank you again to the hospice."

She will be taking part in the 11-mile Midnight Walk on Saturday, June 28, along with colleague Elaine Ainsworth, daughter Megan and her friend Emily Bowller.

Completing Team Hart will be Nicky and Josh Cooper from Whelpley Hill, whose grandmother was also cared for at the hospice.

Mrs Hart took part in last year's event and said: "Last year was very emotional as we’d only lost Dave four months earlier but we talked about him a lot and it brought back lots of happy memories of him.

"It was a really fun night – everyone comes out of the pub to cheer you on and cars pass you sounding their horns. It really inspires you to carry on. We can’t wait to get out our pink tutus, leg warmers and bunny ears for this year’s event. I’d recommend it to anyone."

Entrants can take part in walks of five or 11 miles from Hemel Hempstead to Berkhamsted and the event is open to anyone.

Registration costs £20 per person (£15 for under 18s), which includes a pink T-shirt, refreshments en route, medal and breakfast upon return. For more details, or to sign up, go to www.stfrancis.org.uk/midnightwalk.

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