A PROLIFIC Christmas charity fundraiser is hoping it truly will be the season to be jolly by raking in funds once again.
Davy Boyle – aka the ‘Caring Caretaker – in Coleraine already has raised £560,000 but says he is not stopping there as he has vowed to push on towards the magical million pounds mark in the years ahead.
The 65-year-old from Aghadowey officially begins his yearly sit out at The Diamond in the heart of Coleraine on Monday December 3 and he will continue until Christmas Eve.
This year his charities are Alzheimer’s; Charlene’s Project; Children’s Heartbeat Trust and the neo-natal unit at the Royal Victoria Hospital.
His good friend Lee Wilson is also helping out this year.
Over the past two decades Davy has raised a whopping £560,000 and says he will not stop until he hits the million pounds mark.
He began his fundraising after seeing a girl with artificial limbs singing in a choir at Coleraine Town Hall where was caretaker up until his retirement in recent years.
She had suffered meningitis and Davy said: “That prompted me to try and help her and I have been doing it ever since. I’m going to push for the million.”
His Town Hall job and charity fundraising meant he became to be known as the ‘caring caretaker’ and he is still a caretaker at New Row Presbyterian Church in Coleraine.
As well as watching the pounds flood in for charity, Davy revealed he also has to keep an eye on the other sort of pounds due to the public’s generosity.
“People are very kind with the coffee, scones and sausage rolls but I could put on a stone of weight so I have to be careful”.
He has no live animals with him anymore but his most unusual moment from his sit-out was when he had two donkeys alongside him in a crib – and they escaped.
Relating the story he said: “We were trying to get everything loaded up one Christmas Eve and the donkeys escaped and ran down a side street into a carpark.
“We were getting worried but looked up the street and this young fella about twenty – a drunk man with a tin of Harp in one hand – was coming walking down the street with the two donkeys on a lead. Obviously he had worked with animals before.”