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Fundraisers ticking off Georgia Williams' wish list

Telford | News | Published:

[gallery] A wish list written by murdered Shropshire teenager Georgia Williams is fast being ticked off by fundraisers determined to continue her legacy.

The 17-year-old from Wellington, who gave her life to volunteering and adventure activities had penned the poignant "Things To Do Before I Die."

Sadly, the try-anything-tomboy never got to complete the list herself. The life of the former New College student was taken by 23-year-old Jamie Reynolds at his home in Avondale Road, Wellington, last May.

But Georgia's parents Steve and Lynnette Williams have been overwhelmed by the amount of people who have offered to do the things their ambitious daughter will never get to accomplish to raise money in her memory.

The Shropshire Star has this week launched text donations to make giving to the Georgia Williams Trust even easier.

HOW TO GIVE TO THE GEORGIA WILLIAMS APPEAL:

It's easy to give:

  • By text: Text FERR31 followed by the amount you want to give to 70070 - for example, to give £5, text FERR31£5
  • By post: Send a cheque payable to The Georgia Williams Trust to Georgia Appeal, Newsdesk, Shropshire Star, Ketley, Telford TF1 5HU
  • From your bank account: Log on to thegeorgiawilliamstrust.org for details

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The charity gives grants to 11 to 18-year-olds living or studying in Telford & Wrekin to help them achieve their dreams and give back to their communities.

A colleague of Mr Williams, PC Nikki Burkitt, of West Mercia Police, wanted to shave her head to raise money for the Georgia Williams Trust and was stunned when he told her the challenge was on his daughter's wish list.

Ms Burkitt, 40, said she would have loved to fulfil a dream for her twin sister Michelle Ingram who drowned aged 33 after her car plunged into a flooded ditch.

Ms Burkitt, who is based at Malinsgate Police Station in Telford, said goodbye to her brunette locks at the Shropshire Tattoo Show, at the Royal Victoria Hotel in Newport, raising £1,4000 for the trust.

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Mr Williams did the honours, with supporters packing out the hotel paying £5 to shave off a strip.

"I was fine until Steve started doing the side then I felt physically sick," said Ms Burkitt, of St Georges.

"I thought I was going to throw up. It just suddenly dawned on me that in a few seconds I'm going to be bald.

"Steve said if you'd have met Georgia you would have got on so well because of your spirit, and that made me really emotional and there were a few tears.

"It gives the family a lot of comfort knowing that people are doing things that Georgia wanted to do.

"I wish I could have met her. She's an amazing young lady that just clearly just thought about everyone else. All her community work shows you what she wanted to do in life and how she wanted to help people.

"I would like to be able to keep my hair like this permanently but unfortunately that isn't possible.

"West Mercia constabulary should be really proud of what I've done to support a colleague with such a good cause."

Meanwhile, a mother and daughter inspired by one of the more madcap ideas on Georgia's to do list took to the streets of her home town dressed as chickens.

Feathers were flying when Deb Barre and her seven-year-old daughter Emily donned the yellow costumes and went for a walk around Wellington.

Deb, 36, who lives in Donnington said her elder daughter Rakaya, 19, was a friend of Georgia.

"As soon as it happened I said I wanted to do something and when I saw the article on the wish list I just picked one off it," she said.

"The people of Wellington were very accepting. They were all up for a good laugh and were asking a lot of questions about the trust and Georgia's wish list. I'm pleased we were able to tick an item off and leave the sky diving to someone else," she joked.

The feathered friends raised more than £100 for the Georgia Williams Trust which works to generate funds and activities to enable young people to participate in life-building activities and contribute to the local community.

Chairman of the Georgia Williams Trust, Richard Langton, narrowly missed out on fulfilling the wish to break a world record when he donned full police riot gear to run the Ironbridge half marathon.

The chief inspector played cops and robbers during the race with firefighter Stuart Ruston, who was dressed as a burglar.

Mr Langton was just over 10 minutes shy of the world record time for the fastest half marathon in full police riot gear.

He completed the race in two hours and 41 minutes but needed to finish in under two-and-a-half hours to make the Guinness book of records.

The police officer was one of about 650 athletes taking part but found his stab vest was proving too hot to handle when he hit the steeper climbs.

Determined to carry on running for Georgia, he was forcedhh to ditch the vest and wave goodbye to the hope of a world record as it required the runner to wear full kit.

"I so wanted to carry on so it was either lose the vest or I wouldn't finish at all," said Mr Langton.

"It was still an amazing experience and something I think Georgia would have approved of."

Georgia's desire to travel has inspired people to take holiday snaps of the trust's wristbands in far flung places.

More than 10,000 wristbands in orange and blue – Georgia's favourite colours – have been sold, bearing the trust motto "Free Your Spirit – Join In" and an image of a ferret, in recognition of the teenager's nickname.

And a series of selfie-style pictures of the wristbands have been posted on the trust's facebook site showing the wearer on their travels.

Destinations have included the Austrian Alps, the summit of Snowdon and Lake Como in Italy.

They have even been snapped at a McFly concert at the Royal Albert Hall and being worn by a Husky dog.

For more information visit www.thegeorgiawilliamstrust.org follow @RememberGeorgia on twitter or find the facebook page at www.facebook.com/TheGeorgiaWilliamsTrust

Georgia's list of hopes and dreams:

Georgia Williams' wish list
  • Travel the world
  • Sky dive
  • Go scuba diving
  • Visit the Bermuda Triangle
  • Give blood
  • Break a world record
  • Bungee jump
  • Fly a helicopter
  • Shave hair off for charity
  • Get on TV
  • Walk an orangutan
  • Save a life
  • Kiss someone famous
  • Go ginger
  • Go to the top of the Eiffel Tower
  • Win the lottery
  • Get a tattoo
  • Dress up as a chicken for a day
  • Eat sushi
  • Not talk for a day
  • Be in a music video
  • Volunteer at an animal sanctuary in a different country
  • Meet Michael Buble
  • Learn the Austin Powers dance then perform in town
  • Talk weirdly for a day
  • Play a proper game of truth or dare
  • Shout only you can hear me in a public place
  • Tell someone how you really feel

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