Friends to hold fundraiser to celebrate life of popular Gosport teenager who tragically died after being hit by a bus in Portsmouth

FRIENDS of a popular Gosport teenager who tragically died this year are hosting a fun fundraising event to celebrate their ‘life and soul of the party’ pal.

By Steve Deeks
Friday, 22nd April 2022, 4:55 am
Updated Friday, 22nd April 2022, 9:43 am

The community is set to come together to fondly remember Elin Martin, 18, who died after a collision with a bus near Gunwharf Quays in January.

Close friend Holly Gladding decided to throw the event on Saturday, May 7 at the Village Home Pub where she works and Elin was a regular.

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From left, Ethan Hope, James Webb and Holly Gladding who will be fundraising at the Village Home pub, Alverstoke, on May 7th, to honour the memory of their friend Elin Martin. Elin was killed by a bus outside Gunwharf Quays in January. The funds will go to Lepra, the charity that inspired Elin to study medicine Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 200422-59)

The event, which starts in the afternoon and runs into the evening, will feature lots of activities including karaoke paid for by the landlord, darts, raffle and quiz - and lots of fun and dancing.

‘Elin was a girl who was always singing and dancing and this event is something she would have enjoyed,’ Holly, 18, said.

‘We want to raise money for the charity that was important to her but it’s really about celebrating her life.

‘It’s been a difficult few months and we are starting our A-level exams soon so I thought it would be nice to do something that was perfect for her.

From left, Holly Gladding, Ethan Hope and James Webb who will be fundraising at the Village Home pub, Alverstoke, on May 7th, to honour the memory of their friend Elin Martin. Elin was killed by a bus outside Gunwharf Quays in January. The funds will go to Lepra, the charity that inspired Elin to study medicine Picture: Chris Moorhouse (jpns 200422-56)

‘She would have loved to be here and would be itching to get up and dance. Elin was always smiling and having a laugh. She was the life and soul of the party.’

Funds will be raised for leprosy charity Lepra after Elin, who had offers to study medicine at university, took an interest in neglected tropical diseases such as leprosy - with Lepra close to her heart.

Elin and Holly were friends throughout much of their school life with both at Bay House sixth form where a large group of friends have grown up together.

Speaking of their grief, Holly said: ‘At first it was very difficult but now everyone has come together. It has been really sad but it has brought everyone together and it will be good to see people have a good laugh like Elin would have wanted.

Friends' tribute for Elin Martin. Pic Holly Gladding

‘We want to do fun things and meet up all the time and share memories of her. We try to remember the good times and what a great friend she was.

‘The college was really good too with them setting up a room for people to share memories and grief counselling.’

Elin’s boyfriend Ethan Hope, 18, said: ‘I loved her and will miss her and will never forget about her. I enjoyed every moment of the time we spent together.

‘She was the love of my life and I lost her too soon.’

'Life and soul of the party' Elin Martin. Pic Holly Gladding

Elin loved sunflowers and Ethan called her ‘the sunflower of my life’.

Friend James Webb, 18, added: ‘Elin was one of my closest friends who always inspired me to do better with school and life in general.’

The friends are still looking for donations to the raffle. Contact the Village Home Pub to help.

More than £5,500 was previously raised for Lepra in memory of Elin - the most money ever raised for the charity on behalf of a cause or person.

To donate to the new campaign ahead of the fundraising event go to: justgiving.com/fundraising/holly-gladding