Northampton woman converts garden into winter wonderland for hospital charity appeal

Ann Williams' Winter Wonderland NNL-141012-094140001
Ann Williams' Winter Wonderland NNL-141012-094140001

With Christmas almost here, people helping to raise £350,000 for a new chemotherapy suite at Northampton General Hospital have been giving their campaign some seasonal sparkle.

Ann Williams converted her garden in Lumbertubs Way into a Winter Wonderland to raise money after losing her husband, Roy, and two daughters, Heidi and Julie, to cancer.

She raised £680 by inviting visitors to see her snow-dusted model Victorian village, chat to Santa in a summer house grotto, and tour her wintry lake, which she created by filling her swimming pool with icebergs and polar bears.

Visitors paid £2 to see Miss Williams’ homemade attractions and were treated to hot drinks and mince pies, a raffle, a tombola and even a visit from the characters from Disney film, Frozen.

Miss Williams said: “The day went really, really well and I smashed my £500 target.

“I sat in that chemotherapy department on and off for two years with Heidi after she was diagnosed with breast cancer. The care is good and the staff are great, but there is little privacy and you don’t want people overhearing details about your treatment.

“The refurbishment will make everything easier for staff and patients and I want to make sure we are giving people the best we can provide.”

NGH’s own oncology department raised a further £580 with a Christmas cake and crafts sale and The Old Bank pub in Northampton town centre hosted a ‘British and French’ themed Charity Band Night. The appeal has now raised almost £160,000 and could see work begin on the new treatment suite next year.



Rob McEwan, from Southfield Road in Duston, raised more than £4,000 towards the appeal with an event at his local pub in memory of his wife, Sarah, who passed away this year. 
They met four years ago through a shared love of playing skittles and were married in June this year as Sarah underwent treatment for an extremely rare series of cancer diagnoses. 
Mr McEwan said: “I feel we should all do whatever we can today to support cancer sufferers of tomorrow.”
The event at the Melbourne Arms in Duston included a skittles tournament, a raffle, an auction and a disco.