Winchester based ​Independent jewellers Jeremy France have smashed their £10K target for donations made to local charity, The Murray Parish Trust, raising nearly £11,000 in just over a year. Since October 2016, the independent Winchester jewellers have been taking charitable donations for all jewellery polishing, as well as holding in-store events and raffles to raise much needed funds for the cause.

Founded in 2014 by married actors Sarah Parish and James Murray in memory of their daughter Ella-Jayne, who sadly passed away in 2009, The Murray Parish Trust endeavours to transform the department in which their baby daughter spent her last precious days. In partnership with Southampton Hospital Charity, they have made it their mission to raise £2million in 2 years via their 2million steps campaign to create a state-of-the-art Paediatric Intensive Care Unit at Southampton General Hospital, which the government has promised to match.

Sarah Parish & James Murray commented: “There is only one way to numb the pain of losing a child and that is to help other children. To try and make a difference to their lives and help give them the future they deserve”.

The new department will become a major trauma centre delivering life-saving, specialist care for critically ill children from across nine different regions, stretching from Devon to West Sussex, Oxfordshire to The Channel Islands.

So far, over £1million has been raised towards the £2million goal, with help from many local and national companies including the family-run jewellers, Jeremy France Jewellers. Owner, Jeremy France, has been based in Winchester since 1990, and has always made a very conscious effort to support local charities, especially ones that will directly impact the lives of his customers and staff alike.

Jeremy France commented: We were immediately touched by The Murray Parish Trust. We have a vested interest not only because we are a family run business, with ‘family’ at the heart of our values, but also many of our employees have children themselves. This is such a great campaign for children both locally and wider-spread, over the proposed nine counties that the trauma unit will cover. As a business, we have a conscious responsibility of course, but we pick the charities we choose to support very carefully. The Murray Parish Trust is a charity we collectively feel very passionately about”.

On 6th February 2018, Jeremy presented a cheque for £10,786.48 to Sarah, the total amount his team and customers have raised so far. In just over a year, the jewellery specialists have organised multiple VIP evenings in their three-story showroom, sponsored the Trust’s Odd Ball and held a dazzling Diamond Raffle, whilst continuously taking donations for polishing up their customers’ most prized possessions. They even scaled Snowdon for some extra sponsorship cash! With 25 members of staff, the team have worked together, dedicating themselves in and out of work hours to support the cause. They are are all immensely proud to have exceeded their personal target, and are hugely appreciative to their wonderful customers who have dug deep into their pockets to make it possible.

With nearly £1million still to be to be raised, the family jewellers have already begun planning some very exciting fundraising activities and events for the year ahead, so watch this space!

Jeremy France with Sarah Parish
Jeremy France with Sarah Parish

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