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Regional press-backed coronavirus appeal smashes £750,000 milestone

A regional press-backed appeal has raised three-quarters of a million pounds to help those affected by coronavirus.

The Cambridgeshire Coronavirus Community Fund – backed by Reach plc titles the Cambridge News and Cambridgeshire Live, as well as Iliffe Media weekly the Cambridge Independent – has now received a total of £750,000 in donations.

The appeal was set up after the titles joined forces with the Cambridgeshire Community Foundation at the start of the crisis.

The milestone provided a splash for the News today, pictured below.

Cambridge 750

Editor-in-chief David Bartlett told HTFP: “Cambridgeshire Community Foundation have done a superb job leading the Cambridgeshire Coronavirus Community Fund, and we have been delighted to be media partners.

“Our readers, local businesses and councils, and some very generous philanthropists have donated much needed money, however it would be remiss not to mention the National Emergencies Trust fund which has been a key donor.

“Part of the reason the National Emergencies Trust has donated more than £370,000 is because CCF have done such a good job disbursing money to charities across the county.

“Our role has been to raise awareness of the fund and all the work that is going on, and we have written dozens of stories to publicise the fund.”

He added: “The funding goal was increased from the original £100,000 in increments, and when CCF’s chief executive Michael O’Toole told me it would eventually need to be £1m I was shocked.

“But we are committed to making sure the fund gets the coverage it needs so it can provide help where it is most needed.

“It is so important that the regional press stand with its communities, and we know there is much more to do. We will continue to do as much as we can to be part of that effort.”

Paul Brackley, editor of the Cambridge Independent, said: “As one of the media partners, we’ve been pleased to support the Cambridgeshire Coronavirus Community Fund through publicising both the appeal and the excellent projects it has helped to fund.

“It is wonderful to see the generosity of those donating to the fund, which is making a real difference in the community, and I would like to congratulate the Cambridgeshire Community Foundation on its work.”

You can read all our coronavirus-related stories here.