SLIMMERS have clubbed together to raise thousands of pounds for charity after money they originally raised was stolen at a meeting.

The Slimming World group, which meets at Heath Street Methodist Church, Golborne, took part in a Race for Life and were collecting sponsorship and donations at their weekly meeting when the money – about £200 – disappeared.

But the slimmers did not let that stop them donating money to Cancer Research UK and organised a raffle to replace the money.

Golborne Slimming World consultant Julie Woodward said: “We walked or ran the 5k route around Pennington Flash in July.

“It was a family affair with mums and pushchairs, younger children enjoying the fun, and members who have felt the pain of cancer and just really wanted to help raise awareness.

“We think there was around £200 in there - £100 of which had come directly from Nicola Lewis, who is fighting to get fit again after having a hip replacement, in the form of sponsor money.”

Just three weeks after the money was taken the group has raised a huge £2,000 through the raffle and came together to celebrate on August 20.

“The Golborne community has just been amazing,” said Julie.

“As soon as they realised what had happened and just how devastated I was they sprung into action.

“I was going on holiday the very next day so was even more upset that I wasn’t going to be around to support everyone through this terrible ordeal.

“To say I was amazed was an understatement.

“I am so proud of all my members - they are just brilliant.”

Businesses donated prizes for the raffle such as a refurbished laptop from Direct.Digital, free catering for 20 people courtesy of Lindley’s catering supplies, hair and beauty vouchers and craft items from She’s Sew Crafty.