GENEROUS staff, clients and friends of Wake Smith Solicitors have helped raised its biggest ever annual charity fundraising total – with a huge £8,500 collected for Weston Park Cancer Charity in Sheffield.

Employees at the Sheffield law firm chose the cancer charity as its good cause for 2018-19 financial year and spent 12 months raising cash through a host of fundraising events.

Events included dress down days, a staff bingo night, running the Sheffield 10k and Sheffield Half Marathon, Great British Bake Off-style cake sales, sweepstakes, competitions, a tuck shop, lunch club raffles and a quiz night.

The substantial donation also means that in the last five years Wake Smith has raised an impressive £30,284.42 for deserving South Yorkshire charities.

Kate Lax, solicitor at Wake Smith and charitable board member, said: “Every year staff at Wake Smith Solicitors vote for a good cause to support throughout the next 12 months. Employees are invited to nominate a local charity with particular importance to them and this year it was Weston Park Cancer Charity.

“Over the last year we have raised a fantastic £8,524.93, which is the most we have ever collected in one year in the firm’s history!

“The cause has really struck a chord with people this year – unfortunately, many people have indirectly, or directly, seen the devastating effect cancer can have on a family member or friend.

“The Charity Board would like say a massive thank you to everyone who donated and organised events and for their continued support.

“And adding up the totals over the past five years, we have now managed to raise an impressive £30,284.42 for a number of very deserving charities including Thornberry Animal Sanctuary, Rotherham General Hospital Special Babycare Unit, Macmillan Cancer and Sheffield Children’s Hospital Charity.”

The Wake Smith charitable board includes Kate Lax, Lorraine Slack, Bridie Mulgrew, Alison Gaddes, Abi Shortte, Laura Sanderson, Scott Haslam, Dean Goulding, Hayley Naisbett, Holly Abbott-Cragg, Jessica Rowbotham and Holly Dobson.

Money raised from Wake Smith is expected to go towards two specialist cancer services – the Cancer Support Centre which offers a free drop in service, complementary therapies, welfare advice and support, and the Clinical Research Unit; which has seen a 20 per cent increase in patients taking part in clinical trials thanks to charitable funding.

Darren Hayes, business development manager from Weston Park Cancer Charity said: “We are absolutely delighted that staff at Wake Smith chose to support Weston Park Cancer Charity through their charity of the year scheme. Thanks to the dedication of everyone involved, they have raised a tremendous amount which will make a huge difference to the lives of cancer patients across the region. We cannot thank everyone enough for their commitment and generosity.”

Weston Park Hospital is the region’s only specialist cancer hospital and centre of excellence for cancer treatment and pioneering cancer research, providing care for thousands of patients across South Yorkshire, North Derbyshire and North Nottinghamshire  – a population of almost 1.8million people.

The charity raises around £2million each year to improve the lives of people living with cancer.

Last year Wake Smith raised £4,600 for Thornberry Animal Sanctuary.