Whitchurch woman's charity wedding walk up Snowdon tops the lot
A Whitchurch woman who climbed to the top of Snowdon in a wedding dress has been named as the quirkiest fundraiser of the year.
Maxine Beech, 31, claimed the honour from the British Heart Foundation after her charity effort.
Maxine lost her father George to a heart attack on Christmas Eve 2009, so in May she and 30 friends – many also dressed in wedding outfits – climbed Snowdon, raising more than £6,000.
In the end there were 34 walkers, 22 in wedding dresses, including three men, and seven in hen-do attire. Several of the dresses were picked up from BHF charity shops.
George died as Maxine - who was 24 at the time of her father’s death - and her boyfriend Richard were making their way to her parent’s house in Cambridgeshire to spend Christmas with her family for the first time.
Unbeknown to her, Richard was planning to ask her father for permission to marry her, but sadly never got the chance.
Richard went on to propose in the Easter, and they married in July 2011.
Maxine said: “So many of the couples I work with have lost someone to heart disease, and several others have also lost their fathers to heart attacks.
“When I realised I wasn’t the only one, and so many of my friends were up for fundraising for the BHF, that was when I got planning.
“My dad wasn’t there to give me away, in the end I decided to walk down the aisle on my own. I thought a wedding themed challenge would be a good idea. It had always been a bit of a joke that I had so many dresses for my wedding day – I had four in total.
“We thought Snowdon would be a challenging thing to do in a wedding dress and we used to go to Wales on holiday a lot, it was a place dad loved.
“I was really proud of having achieved it – my dad would have been so proud of me.”
Around 38,500 people are living with heart and circulatory disease in Shropshire.
The BHF is currently funding 37 research projects at institutions in the West Midlands.
Warren Appleby, British Heart Foundation fundraising manager for Shropshire and Staffordshire, said: “It is only because of people like Maxine that we can continue funding our life saving research into heart disease.
“It’s great to see all the weird and wonderful ways our fundraisers raise money, and we are so incredibly grateful for the time and effort that they put in and the people who support them.
“By following in her footsteps you too could join our fight against heart disease and help us save lives.”