C. Talbot: Good evening. Welcome to ITV News. This is Calendar with John Shires and Christine Talbot.
John Shires: Here are tonight’s main stories.
A labour of love. How a Yorkshire gas fitter’s giving his time for free to help the families of poorly youngsters.
Now all this week we’re searching for the next fundraiser of the year as part of the Daily Mirror Pride of Britain awards. Now yesterday we showed you Sheila Scott’s, who’s raised over half a million pounds for the British Legion.
C. Talbot: Well today it’s the turn of Allen Hart from Leeds. After losing his daughter, the gas engineer raised thousands of pounds for a children’s cancer charity and set up a free service to help others in similar situations. Sarah Clark reports.
Sarah Clark: Hart maybe Allen’s surname but to those he has helped say he’s just that, all heart. For the past 10 years the gas engineer has raised thousands of pounds for the charity Candlelighters and has worked for free for families with sick children.
Allen Hart: I just did it to keep my daughter’s memory alive to be honest. That’s why I do it.
Sarah Clark: In 2007, Allen’s three year old daughter Laura lost her battle with a rare form of cancer.
Allen Hart: Spending almost two years in hospital with my daughter changed my life really. My daughter was diagnosed with cancer when she were 16 months old. She had what’s called a Wilms’ tumour. She was stage four. We used to stay at hospital with her, so I gave up work and spent me time with her.
Sarah Clark: After coming to terms with his loss, Allen set up his own company. Since that time more than 3,000 engineers across the country have backed his campaign raising £100,000 so far.
Allen Hart: I just did a day a week when I could. Just myself, so when customers paid for a job I just donated it to Candlelighters and then somebody on Facebook seen what I were doing and then he put a link on to what I were doing and then all the other lads on Gas Chat joined in. Then manufacturers got involved, boiler manufacturers and started donating boilers to us, so then we just did more and more charity instals.
Sarah Clark: By turning tragedy into benefiting others, the regional finalist has inspired many including his wife Joanne.
Joanne Hart : I think it’s really inspiring and it’s heartwarming. He’s touched a lot of people in the things that he does. I think he’s amazing. I’m really proud of him.
Sarah Clark: Allen says he’ll continue his hard work to help other families and to keep Laura’s legacy alive.
Sarah Clark, ITV News in Leeds.
John Shires: We’ll have one more nominee tomorrow before announcing our Pride of Britain winner on Friday #Gaschattour