Play centre in Portchester raises more than £700 for children’s cancer charity

A FAMILY-RUN play centre in Portchester raised more than £700 for children with cancer at a charity day.

By Elsa Waterfield
Monday, 22nd November 2021, 4:57 pm
Attendees at the Busy Town charity day. Picture: Mike Cooter (011121)
Attendees at the Busy Town charity day. Picture: Mike Cooter (011121)

Busy Town, a children’s role play centre in Portchester, held a charity day on November 1 and raised £730 for Children with Cancer UK.

The play centre, which is focused on supporting families and helping the local community, selected the charity after 10-year-old Sophie Fairall from Stubbington died from a rare cancer in September.

‘There are so many parents and children going through similar situations, they all need all the help they can get’, said Julie Middle, co-owner of Busy Town.

Sofia Robinson (5) and Noah Lock (3) with princess Melissa Jeffrey (26). Picture: Mike Cooter (011121)

‘Whilst we’ve all been dealing with Covid, they’ve been dealing with that as well so we just wanted to see what we could do to try and help’, she added.

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Julie and her sister, Hannah Kirk, are joint owners of Busy Town, It was open for just three weeks before the first lockdown.

The sisters decided to run the charity event as they have experienced their fair share of hardship over the course of the pandemic.

Melissa Jeffrey (26) from Enchanted Events welcomed children to the charity day. Picture: Mike Cooter (011121)

The sisters said: ‘As hard as that was, we are fortunate enough to have healthy, happy children and so we want to do what we can for those families that don’t.’

Donations from various businesses flooded in when the sisters announced their charity event.

Gluten-free cupcakes were gifted by Hannah’s husband, who runs Stuffed in Waterlooville, and Knot Just Blooms, a florist in Fareham, donated a voucher.

Co-owners of Busy Town, Hannah Kirk and Julie Middle

The event was filled with an array of delights for both adults and children, including games and treats, as well as a visit from Cinderella played by Melissa Jeffrey from Enchanted Events.

She volunteered as part of the fundraiser.

‘It was the noisiest day of the year, but it was really good fun’, said Julie.

The event, which was fully booked, was a success and the sisters said parents were extremely pleased not only to have enjoyed a fun-filled day with the children, but also be donating to a worthy cause.

Julie Middle (46), co-owner of Busy Town play centre. Picture: Mike Cooter (011121)

Both sisters wanted to give back to a community that has supported them.

To donate to the cause visit

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