Call the Midwife star coming to Northampton to help 78 Derngate’s fundraising efforts for new extension

The 19th century visitor attraction is fundraising for a new atrium extension

Thursday, 30th January 2020, 9:00 pm
Updated Friday, 31st January 2020, 1:56 pm
78 Derngate is hosting the fundraiser to raise money for their atrium extension. Photo: Kirsty Edmonds.

An actor from Call the Midwife will be hosting a behind-the-scenes audience with one of the show’s creators to help fundraise for a Northampton attraction’s extension bid.

Bosses at 78 Derngate set themselves a target of raising £200,000 to be used alongside council funding to make the visitor attraction bigger by building an atrium extension.The trust behind the 19th century house will be organising a number of fundraisers in the coming months, including the Call the Midwife event, which will see actor Stephen McGann, who plays Dr Turner, and creator Heidi Thomas speak to an audience.

Company secretary Les Patterson said: “We have full planning permission and listed building consent now.

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“We’re in the process of getting detailed drawings done. We’re deadly serious about getting this extension done.

“We want to create more space to move the shop. We want to make it four times bigger by building the extension.

“We also want to create an area where we can put performances on.

“But we have not got all the money and that is what we are appealing for.

“We have reached £108,000 but our target is £200,000 to match what Northampton Borough Council has promised they will give us.

“It has taken us a year to get to £108,000 but hopefully we can get some momentum going now.”

There are also a number of other ways the money can be raised.

Les added: “We have had a lot of people donating via a Local Giving link but a lot are anonymous donations.

“We would like to recognise those people who have supported us by putting their name on the glass in the atrium extension.

“People can also come in and shop or pay to visit the house as well and all these things will contribute to raising the funds.”

Les says the team are hoping to reach the £200,000 target by the middle of this year so the extension can go ahead.

The Call the Midwife event will be held at 7pm on February 28 at Northampton High School.

Tickets cost £12.50 and can be bought from 78 Derngate’s website, where a Local Giving page can also be found.