District's community lotto raises over £4k for canal restoration project

A new community fundraising lotto has raised more than £4,000 towards restoring a canal within six months of its launch.

Work to restore Lichfield and Hatherton Canal at Danford
Work to restore Lichfield and Hatherton Canal at Danford

Lichfield's community lottery was set up by the district council to boost good causes in the area.

Among the first projects to register for support was Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust, which has spent the allocations on construction materials.

Christine Howles, the canal trust's communications director, said: "I first heard about the new lottery from a tweet by the leader of the council, and was very excited to find out how it would work, so I signed up for the online introduction session and wasn't disappointed.

Work to restore Lichfield and Hatherton Canal

“I only got halfway through the session and signed up there and then. It was very easy to sign up online, set up the profile for our charity, and then wait with anticipation for launch day.

"We can login to our easy-to-use lottery admin panel and it's full of useful information about how many supporters we have week on week and how many of them win. We also get our customisable leaflets and social media graphics, which are updated regularly, so it's easy for us to promote through our channels.

“When launch day came, we started promoting our page through social media and to our members, and we immediately had people signing up. By the time of the first draw, we'd increased our supporter target several times and had 151 supporters.

"We were very pleased to see four of those win a prize in the first draw and we've had winners almost every week - but no jackpot wins yet. We're keeping our fingers crossed that one of our growing number of supporters will win the jackpot one day.”

“The money raised is vital to us as it's a regular monthly income and a pretty consistent figure exceeding £300 each month, with the potential to increase as we continue to promote the lottery.

“It is going towards our restoration funds to buy the materials we need to restore the Lichfield Canal. It has been such a welcome boost as we've seen building material costs rocket over the last year while our usual fundraising activities had to be paused due to Covid.

“I'd recommend any local good cause to sign up. With a simple registration process and then a regular income stream, it's a win-win for any charity," she added.

It works by players paying £1 per ticket, and 60p from every ticket sold is donated. Players visit lichfieldcommunitylottery.co.uk and choose a cause.

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