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Sleepout raises money for homelessness charity

Beds were swapped for sleeping bags to raise money for a self-funded Bucks homelessness charity.

The Big MarlowSleepout took place on Friday outside All Saints Church in the High Street, where 40 ‘hardy souls’, some as young as 12, slept outside in aid of Wycombe Homeless Connection (WHC).

Equipped with cardboard boxes and woolly layers, participants did their bit to help rough sleepers.

WHC helps more than 500 people in the district every year who are homeless or at risk of being left without a roof under their head.

The charity requires an income of £240,000 annually to employ its specialist support workers, and the Big Sleepout is its biggest fundraising event.

It hosts a drop-in support centre throughout the year every weekday morning in Castle Street, High Wycombe, to give on-the-spot assistance, emergency accommodation and legal and medical advice.

Joining the sleepers was Cllr Alex Collingwood (Con, Marlow North and West).

He said: “We have a serious issue. We need to publicise that there are a large number of individuals who are less fortunate than ourselves.

“In Marlow, in particular, we live in a very affluent area, but there is nonetheless great income disparity.

“We are a community made of real people and must come together to help everyone, whether they’re homeless or not.

“Partaking in this event is only a small way to give, but WHC is a small, self-funded, local charity; they need the money, so I got off the plane from Dubai and came straight here.”

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