Gosport pub thanked for sending terminally-ill man on dream holiday

James Taylor at his desk in his office at 116 High Street, Old Portsmouth.

Those halcyon days when pen and paper just worked!

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TERMINAL cancer sufferer Jason Clarke has thanked a pub and its regulars after they raised hundreds of pounds to send him on holiday to Cyprus.

Mr Clarke, a ventilation installer, was diagnosed with lung cancer on New Year’s Eve, which has since spread to his lungs, ribs, liver and spine.

Jason Clarke holds the New Inn pub team shirt with his name on the back with, from the left, Shaun Sweeney, Tracey Bone, Clyde Hoile, Jack Bone, Marty Ward, Malcolm Ellis and Steve Lewington. Picture: Paul Jacobs (143309-2)

Jason Clarke holds the New Inn pub team shirt with his name on the back with, from the left, Shaun Sweeney, Tracey Bone, Clyde Hoile, Jack Bone, Marty Ward, Malcolm Ellis and Steve Lewington. Picture: Paul Jacobs (143309-2)

Mr Clarke, of Wilmott Close, Gosport, said: ‘The holiday was brilliant.

‘It was the right temperature, not too hectic and the villa was amazing with a big pool. I am very grateful.

Mr Clarke and two friends had gone on a three-day respite break to Amsterdam earlier in the summer which went horribly wrong after the trio were left stranded at the airport when the plane home was delayed by nine hours.

As Mr Clarke was on lots of medication, including high-dosage painkillers, the delay meant he ran out of the medication that he had been allowed by customs to take with him, leaving him in excruciating pain.

Mr Clarke, who has completed six rounds of chemotherapy, is very ill and said he has not received an apology from Flybe the airline responsible for the delay, nor has he received any compensation.

When caring landlady Tracey Bone heard about the holiday from hell, she held a three-day fundraising event at the New Inn, in Melville Road, Gosport, where the kind-hearted locals raised more than £1,000 to send Mr Clarke and some friends to Cyprus.

The 42-year-old enjoyed his week in Peyia – a town in the Paphos district of Cyprus, with four of his friends from Gosport. While he was there, the trip was made even better as they met up with one of his best friends Andy Loney, who lives on the island.

Mr Clarke said: ‘I want to say a big thank you to Tracey and her staff. I couldn’t have asked for more. I honestly didn’t want to come home. I was over the moon with what they did for me. It was amazing.’

The humble landlady said she was only too happy to help and the pub’s football team has even had Mr Clarke’s name embroidered on to the back of it.

Ms Bone said: ‘Jason is really ill and we wanted to do something nice for him and send him away. The football shirt was the last piece of it.’

Gosport Scaffolding and the New Inn put in money for the new shirts, with Gosport business CMP Embroidery adding the words for cost price.