Sunderland schoolgirls raise hundreds of pounds for cancer charity with sponsored silence

Joyce Barnett, Hannah Bowerbank, Rachel Wigham and Aletha Ferry.
Joyce Barnett, Hannah Bowerbank, Rachel Wigham and Aletha Ferry.

Two Sunderland schoolgirls have raised more than £700 for a cause close to their hearts by completing a sponsored silence.

Friends Rachel Wigham and Hannah Bowerbank completed the five-hour endurance test without access to their mobile phones and computers as well as not being able to speak.

The pair decided to raise funds for Sunderland Cancer Patient Support charity after 15-year-old Rachel’s grandmother, Pat Punshon, was diagnosed with breast cancer, which is thankfully being successfully treated.

Rachel and Hannah, 13, who attend St Anthony Girl’s Catholic Academy, met at a drama group and became close friends.

Rachel’s dad, Ivan Wigham, said: “They were delighted, flabbergasted, when they realised they had raised £770.

They had originally set out to raise £100 so to be so far over their target they were so pleased.

“It was a tough task, they weren’t allowed any access to technology and were only really allowed to do their homework or read a book.

“We’re so proud of Rachel and I know Hannah’s parents are really proud too.

“They were determined to do it.”

The pair met with volunteers, Joyce Barnett and Aletha Ferry, from the patient’s support group, and received certificates for their efforts.

The pair raised £770.70 in sponsorship which has been donated to the charity.