Blackpool hotel maids to stage charity trolley push on the Prom

Kind-hearted housekeepers from four Blackpool hotels are aiming to clean up with a big fundraising push for charity.

By Tim Gavell
Wednesday, 6th July 2022, 12:30 pm

Teams from The Hotel Sheraton, The Cliffs, The Elgin Hotel and The Royal Boston, plus staff from Ma Kelly’s Showboat cabaret bar, on The Queen’s Promenade, will don fancy dress while pushing their fully laden housekeeping trolleys seven kilometres along the seafront next Wednesday.

It marks a rerun for The Hotel Sheraton team, led by head housekeeper Jeanette Lovatt, who last year ran up a total of more than £3,000.

This year the proceeds will be divided between Blackpool charity, Boat House Youth and Warwickshire charity, Molly Ollys.

Housekeepers from the The Hotel Sheraton, The Cliffs, The Elgin Hotel and The Royal Boston, plus staff from Ma Kelly’s Showboat cabaret bar,are to do a trolley dash along the Prom for charity

Nigel Seddon, the managing director of The Elgin, has been a long-time supporter of Boat House Youth, which helps the young people of Blackpool to experience residential outdoor activities, a range of weekly sessions and school holiday provision for children in two of the most deprived areas of the town.

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Every year it works with around 1,000 disadvantaged young people from the Blackpool area, many of whom face deprivation and isolation.

A spokesman for the charity said: “Our mission is to break the cycle of deprivation by providing young people with skills, attributes and aspirations to enter into employment.

They aim to run 7Km with fully laden maid's trolleys

"Without regular positive engagement young people are far more likely to become involved in risk-taking and anti-social behaviour which invariably leads them further away from future employment opportunities.

"We seek to unlock any barrier that prevents young people from engaging.”

Molly Olly’s Wishes was established in 2011 following the death of Rachel and Tim Ollerenshaw’s eight-year-old daughter Molly from a rare kidney cancer.

The Warwick charity, marking its 10th anniversary, supports children with terminal or life-threatening illnesses and their families and helps with their emotional wellbeing as well as granting wishes and donating toys and books to children and UK hospitals.

Liz Brown, managing director of The Sheraton where the push will start from, is a close friend of the family.

She said: “Molly Ollys is a charity I have been involved with since it was formed 10 years ago and the staff and guests at the hotel raised more than £7,000 during 2018/19.

“Rachel accepted a cheque in October 2019 and had the opportunity to meet the team and because of that Jeannette wanted to donate any money raised for this charity.”

Molly Olly Charity founder and friend Rachel Ollerenshaw said: “The Hotel Sheraton Team have been great supporters of Molly Olly’s over the years and this is another fun idea to fundraise.

"We are always grateful for the support but now more than ever we appreciate the help at a time when the hotel, like so many businesses, has had a difficult two years.

“It is really kind of them to take time to think of others. We hope that people will get behind them and help make the dark days brighter for children with life threatening illnesses.”

Mascot of the charity is a therapeutic toy lion called Olly The Brave who has his own Hickman line and a detachable mane which helps to explain and normalise the effects of chemotherapy. These form part of an Olly The Brave pack handed out to 40 hospitals, along with a book from the charity’s Olly The Brave series.

Part of more than £3m raised to date, has been used to fund the first Molly Olly consultant in paediatric medicine at Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

Liz paid tribute to her team which, she says, have worked hard to maintain the highest possible levels of cleanliness to keep guests safe throughout the pandemic, which severely impacted the business.

She said: “I am incredibly proud of our house-keeping team. Life was not easy during and since the lockdowns, yet they have the time and inclination to put their energy to great use and, more importantly, support others. We are delighted that our neighbouring hotels and bars from Queens Promenade are joining in.

"Jeannette’s aim is to get into the Guinness Book of Records for the biggest Housekeepers’ Trolley Dash.”