CHARITY golfers have gone a fairway toward helping a local hospice after raising close to a quarter of million pounds.

Eighteen teams took to the course at Blackwell Golf Club, Darlington, for the 18th Heritage Healthcare sponsored competition in aid of St Teresa’s Hospice.

The event, which has raised just under a quarter of a million pounds since it began in  2001, has helped to assist the hospice in providing free care and support for residents of Darlington, South West Durham and North Yorkshire affected by life-limiting illness.

Director of Heritage Healthcare and honorary member of the Darlington and District Hospice Movement Sally Pickersgill, who organised the event alongside her husband Glenn, said: “This is our last Heritage Healthcare sponsored golf day and it is quite fitting that we should sponsor our final 18thhole in the competition’s 18thyear and finish with 18 teams.

“The past 18 years have gone by really quickly and they have all been great days, but work commitments now mean that we are taking a step back and the hospice will take over the running of the event in the years to come.

“Heritage Healthcare will still be very involved in supporting the hospice through its various fundraising events and of course I will be on hand to offer my experience to the  events team for next year’s golf day.”

Winners of the tournament with 90 points across the 18-hole course were Darlington-based MAC International who took home the engraved winners trophy, individual glass trophies and bottles of red wine.

MAC managing director Paul Thompson said: “Everyone in our team has had relatives or friends who have been cared for by St Teresa’s Hospice, so as well as being here to support Sally and Glenn this event is one that is very close to our hearts.

“MAC has entered a team every year since the tournament began but this is the first time that we have won.

“We’ll definitely be back next year to support the hospice and to hopefully defend our title.”

Chief executive of St Teresa’s Hospice Jane Bradshaw added: “Sally and Glenn are incredible ambassadors for St Teresa’s and I don’t have words to adequately express my thanks to them for their support over the years.

“I’m delighted that Sally will still be on hand to help us ensure that the golf day will continue next year and I look forward to seeing everyone here again on September 4.

“This year, as with the majority of hospices, we are predicting a serious deficit by the end of the year. The country is flat and charitable giving is at an all-time low so funding raised from events like this is so important to help us raise the £3m a year needed to ensure St Teresa’s Hospice can continue to provide its much needed services.”

Anyone wishing to take part in or sponsor the St Teresa’s Hospice Golf Day 2020 should contact 01325 254321 or events@darlingtonhospice.org.uk