A CHARITY that supports seriously ill young people across Yorkshire is now based in Otley.

The Forget-Me-Not Trust provides terminally ill or chronically sick children in the county with gifts and special experiences such as holidays, computers, bicycles or trampolines.

It was set up in 1987 by Debbie Warrington in memory of her brother, Paul, who had died from a terminal illness called Mitochondrial Myopathy when he was just 17. Debbie herself also died of the same illness four days after her 21st birthday.

The siblings’ surviving brother, Keith, has the condition too and volunteers for medical testing at Newcastle Royal Victoria Hospital each year to help research into understanding, and ultimately defeating, the illness.

Paul, Debbie and Keith’s father, David Warrington, is a founder trustee of the Forget-Me-Not Trust which has relocated to Otley after being previously based in Leeds.

He said: “We welcome the opportunity to help children living in Otley and surrounding areas especially in these unprecedented times. We aim to provide terminally ill or chronically sick children in all of Yorkshire with treats and morale boosters.

“People have raised funds for the charity by taking part in many varied sponsorship events such as duck races, weekend charity walks, pig race barbecues, tribute nights and black-tie dinners with celebrity guest speakers.

“Other successful smaller challenges have seen athletes and younger people taking part in cycle races, Tough Mudder challenges, dance marathons and afternoon teas - any contribution is welcome!”

Among the local young people who have been helped over the years is Otley teenager Jack Hurst, who studied at Prince Henry’s Grammar School. Jack died of cancer in 2017, aged 17.

The Forget-Me-Not Trust helped pay for Jack to travel to London with his family to see his beloved Arsenal play in a cup final at Wembley.

The charity, which uses all of the money it raises on providing gifts and treats, can help with grants of up to £500 for anyone up to the age of 21 who has a confirmed serious illness.

Grants can be applied for by sending in a request, accompanied by verified medical evidence - such as a letter from a doctor, hospital or social worker - to: The Forget-Me-Not-Trust, Newby House, West Busk Lane, Otley LS21 3LY.