Singleton Primary teacher Karen's retirement fund will help to fill Blackpool hospice black hole

Forget the expensive presents or flash party, all Karen Haigh wants to mark her retirement is your cash.

Tuesday, 23rd June 2020, 12:30 pm

But, the Singleton CE Primary School teacher is not planning to blow it on a lavish cruise out of Covid .

Instead, she will be handing over every penny to Trinity Hospice to help fill some of the financial void left by the toll the coronavirus lockdown has had on fund raising.

Karen has been at the village school for 26 years, where she met her husband Tony, after teaching in London and Japan.

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Born in Blackpool, she was educated at the former Fleetwood Grammar School and Blackpool Sixth Form then moved to University College London. After her PGCE she went to teach in Japan.

Following a divorce she moved back home to Lancashire with her two children and got a job at the village school. - originally as a supply teacher and has stayed there 26 years.

She started out teaching the year sixes then took over as the early years lead as well as doing some work as a teacher adviser for Lancashire County Council, supporting the early years sector.

Tony was working as a teacher there but later moved to Clitheroe. The couple married and he retired three years ago.

Karen lost her mum Thelma Johnson to motor neurone disease in October and said she now wants to take early retirement to travel with Tony and also help repay Trinity for the care they gave Thelma.

She said: " The hospice was amazing and mum loved going there. It is the most incredible place, just the kindness of the people there and the support they give is wonderful.

"When lockdown came and the restrictions due to Covid etc were on we were concerned that Trinity was losing out on a lot of money from fund raising.

"When I said I was going to go for retirement I knew this was the right thing to do.

"My mum would think it was great, fantastic. It is what she would have wanted. She really liked it there and they were wonderful with her."

Karen set herself a target of £100 and couldn't believe it when it swelled to more than £1,000 and the donations are still rolling in.

She added: " The hospice has been in touch and it is just brilliant. I don't need anything. and just plan to travel around Europe when we can."

Anyone wanting to help the hospice and add to Karen's fund at