THE nephew of a woman who left £20,000 to the region’s air ambulance service in her will has handed over the donation.
Andrew Duckworth, 41, from Darlington, gave the bumper cheque to the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) which was left in the will of his beloved aunt, Mae Higgins, from Hurworth, near Darlington.
Mr Duckworth, a member of Durham Advanced Motorcyclists, was joined by the group on a visit to the charity’s base at Durham Tees Valley Airport yesterday (Monday).
He said: “We’re all very proud of the legacy which she has left. We spoke often of the air ambulance and that’s why she wanted to support GNAAS.”
Ms Higgins, 85, was born in Bury, Manchester, where she lived and worked as a bookkeeper until moving to Hurworth around 15 years ago.
Mr Duckworth said: “She was a witty and sharp character.
“GNAAS is a fantastic charity and very important for bikers. That’s why the group fundraises for the service when we can.
“We have all seen the aircraft at crashes and the skill of the pilots is tremendous. It’s been a pleasure to hand over the funds in her name today.”
GNAAS is encouraging people to leave a gift in their will during ‘Make a Will Month’.
Harriet Langston, of GNAAS, said: “The donation from Mae is phenomenal and we are incredibly grateful.
“During this October, we are encouraging people to participate in make a will month in a bid to raise awareness about this method of giving.”
Last year, the charity received £1.8million through gifts left in wills.
Miss Langston said: “Without this method of giving, we would lose a great portion of our income.
“Whether you already have a will or are thinking of making one, a decision to leave a gift, however big or small, is certain to make a lasting difference.
“We want everybody to know their gift is a potentially life-saving legacy. One which will serve to protect the people who live, work and play in the North-East for generations to come.”
To discuss leaving a gift to GNAAS in your will, call 01325-487263 or visit our will’s page.