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Lake District Calvert Trust saved by appeal

Cumbria based outdoor activity centre Lake District Calvert Trust, which was at risk of closure, will now be able to reopen in part thanks to the fundraising efforts of a boy who lives with a severe brain injury.

Oliver Voysey, from Newcastle, completed a series of challenges leading up to his 13th birthday in aid of the Lake District's Calvert Trust outdoor activity centre, managing to raise nearly £220,000. His initial target was £25,000. The money raised by Oliver, along with a similar amount raised by a "bounce back" appeal ran by the centre, has saved it from financial collapse.

Oliver requires specialist care after he suffered a brain injury when he was two days old - leaving him with cerebral palsy, sight loss, autism, learning difficulties and epilepsy.

Oliver and his family were regular visitors at the centre where he was able to take part in activities such as rock climbing, abseiling, and canoeing. When the centre announced in December that it was facing closure after losing more than £1m due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Oliver set up his themed fundraising campaign.

Sean Day, centre manager said: "We've been absolutely blown away by Oliver's efforts, and the fantastic support we've had from the community.

"That's had the fantastic result that we are no longer facing closure in April."

Lake District Calvert Trust is now awaiting an announcement from the Department for Education on when outdoor education residential trips can begin again but is hoping this will be from the 21 June.

Oliver's mother, Sarah Voysey, said: "For a long time we hadn't wanted to believe it would happen, that we'd get enough money, that they would reopen, but [this is] such good news."