Friends’ festive fundraiser in memory of tragic Jamie

From left, Suzanne Connor, Karen Maclennan and Jessica Clow at the Oak Tree Farm pub in Doxford Park.

From left, Suzanne Connor, Karen Maclennan and Jessica Clow at the Oak Tree Farm pub in Doxford Park.

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A much-loved son will be remembered as part of a festive charity extraganza at his former workplace.

Sunderland Rugby Club player Jamie Maclennan died suddenly aged just 27 last December.

The late Jamie Maclennan.

The late Jamie Maclennan.

Jamie, of Thornholme Road, close to Sunderland city centre, had been diagnosed with epilepsy in his teens and is believed to have suffered a seizure.

Oak Tree Farm in Doxford Park, where Jamie worked, are now organising a day of fund-raising and entertainment night to remember their former colleague as the first year of his sudden death approaches on Saturday, December 5.

Cash generated on the day will go to Grace House in Southwick, which offers short break and respite care to children and young people with complex disabilities, health needs and life limiting conditions.

Jessica Clow, a friend of Jamie’s since since primary school, said: “I went right through school with Jamie and I was over-the-moon when we started working together.

“Jamie was due to be in work the day he died and I was devastated when I was told he had died, I lost a best friend that day.

“Together with manager Suzanne Connor and Beth Reineck at Oak Tree Farm we wanted to do something special in the week leading up to his first year away from us.”

Jamie’s mum and senior fund-raiser at Grace House respite centre Karen Maclennan said: “Jamie loved working at the Oak Tree Farm and they were so understanding about Jamie’s epilepsy.

“I would like to thank Jessica, Beth, manager Suzanne and colleagues who have worked really hard to make sure the day time and evening is filled with lots for us to enjoy and remember Jamie with a smile.”

During the day, there are activities to be enjoyed by the whole family.

Starting at 9.45am with a screening of Frozen, followed with a special visit from Elsa, the Snow Queen.

Santa and his elves will be present from 12.15 and 3pm bringing party games and Christmas songs, and there will be a host of events and entertainment throughout the day and into the evening. Tickets for the evening, which starts at 7pm, are £6 and are available by calling 528 7682 or Grace House 525 2885.