Thursday, June 21, 2007

Bras across the Menai Strait

Today on the Menai Bridge strange things were happening. Macmillan Cancer Support in North Wales had asked women at many workplaces to donate £1 plus a bra. The result was that there were more than enough bras to stretch across the Menai Bridge and back. I know because I helped remove them at the end of the day when it rained on us!

Eleri Brady, Fund Raising Manager for North Wales for Macmillan Cancer Support (seen here on the bridge today)telephoned me and asked if I could find two people to come along and take part in a bucket collection on the Menai Bridge. You see, I am the Secretary of the Anglesey Committee for Macmillan Cancer Support and so Eleri phoned me to help with the event. I recruited the assistance of Joan Cadman, a seasoned campaigner for Macmillan who lives near Cemlyn Bay. At 4.00pm I met up with Joan and we drove to the mainland side of the Menai Bridge.

We then went onto the bridge to find Eleri who was being interviewed on Coast Radio when I arrived. Next job was to get our buckets for collecting plus the high visibility vests we were required to wear. Joan and I, together with Mary, a council member for Macmillan went to the Anglesey end of the bridge. We collected a reasonable amount but felt we could do better by joining forces with the others at the Bangor end of the bridge. Once there we were kept busy by the huge numbers of drivers who stopped to donate to our cause. They were wonderful people.

Many cars stopped especially to donate and this was good. Then, to my surprise, a bus stopped and the driver invited me to get on board and collect from his passengers! Some grumbled but I got some donations, including one from the driver! It was very exciting. One driver apologised for not having any change as he donated a £20 note! We all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

Our collection time lasted from 4.30pm to 6.30pm. After this we began to help remove the five hundred bras that were linked together across the famous bridge. Now the rain began to fall. We cut all the nylon ties and the string which attached the underwear to the bridge in record time. Not a single piece of litter was left to offend the Gwynedd Council. As I collected the bras in I pretended to read the labels, "34b, 38 Double D, 36a etc. We laughed as we brought the bridge back to its original condition.

When I was standing on the Anglesey side a man came over to me. "I came here just to photograph the bridge," he said, "but its festooned with bras!" He gave me a donation and I told him how to get under the bridge to take some unusual photos. It was a short but happy time. This is the pleasure one derives from working on a stunt to raise cash for a deserving cause.

Had I not come to live in Anglesey I should never have known about today's stunt. It makes a difference to cancer patients and we get loads of fun doing it. It is a privilege to be part of it. I certainly have never enjoyed fund raising as much as this. We collected loads of money for a worthwhile cause. It gives you a glow!


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