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Pensioner's frontline hero crocheted bears fundraiser supports elderly care and health services


By Kyle Ritchie

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A Banff woman's colourful crocheted frontline hero bears have raised £550 for local elderly care and health services.

Pam Maclennan-Brown started making the bears when she celebrated her 80th birthday at the start of the first lockdown last spring.

It was a way to keep her occupied and she wanted to spread some cheer to people.

The bears, which included nurses, paramedics and lifeboat volunteers, became popular and she then had the idea to sell them to raise funds.

One even reached Prime Minister Boris Johnson through Banff and Buchan MP David Duguid.

She completed her fundraising at the end of December.

Pam Maclennan-Brown working on one of her crocheted bears.
Pam Maclennan-Brown working on one of her crocheted bears.

She said: "I raised £550 altogether, with £200 each going to Banff Care Home and Doocot View.

"The remaining £150 will go to the nurses at Macduff Medical Practice.

"They proved popular and one was even made for Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who received his from MP David Duguid. The teddies also featured on a programme on BBC Scotland."

Prime Minister Boris Johnson received his bear from local MP David Duguid.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson received his bear from local MP David Duguid.

She started making the bears when she needed a distraction from all the bad news.

When she had finished them they were displayed in her cottage window with details of how to order them.

She added: "It was great to see people’s smiles as they passed by and I received most of my orders that way."

The bears included paramedics, therapists, drivers, cleaners, nurses, lab assistants, shop workers, surgeons, care assistants, lifeboat volunteers, a baby for an expectant mum, and festive ones for Christmas.

A variety of frontline worker bears were made.
A variety of frontline worker bears were made.

Pam downloaded the pattern for the bears from the Facebook page Yarn It, Darn It. She sold them for £5 and £3 for NHS workers

As well as local orders, they were sent as far afield as Shetland, Devon, London and several places in between.

She managed to raise just over her initial target of £500.

People received them as gifts to boost their morale while working in very stressful times and people contacted Pam to tell her they had been cheered up by them.


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