In the first happening of its kind in Harrogate, business leaders have done their bit to help the homeless at Christmas time.
More than £18,000 has been raised so far by Harrogate’s first ever “CEO Sleepout”, held in the grounds of Ashville College.
The overnight event - which began at 8pm and finished at 6am the following morning - saw a total of 22 local businessmen and businesswomen, including the school’s teadmaster - take part in the charity endeavour to raise support for the town’s homeless.
The Mayor of Harrogate, Coun Bernard Bateman, was there at the start of the ten-hour fundraiser organised by CEO Sleepout, a national charity which was formed in 2013 with the aim of fighting homelessness and poverty.
Since then nearly 2,000 CEO’s, business owners and leaders have raised just over £2m between them.
CEO Sleepout UK's national co-ordinator Bianca Robinson said: “This is the first time that we have held an event in Harrogate. I would like to thank Ashville College and all those who braved the elements, to raise awareness of the plight of homeless people across the district.
“The amount of money raised so far is in excess of £18k, which is phenomenal. It will go towards providing clothes, shelter and food for those who, for whatever reason, find themselves out on the streets.”
Ashville College headmaster Richard Marshall said: “This was a truly humbling experience. It has certainly made me appreciate what some people go through, not just once, but every single night of the week.
“It was a stark reminder as to how incredibly fortunate we all are to have a warm, dry and safe home to go to. I hope that the money we have raised will go some way to making the lives of homeless men and women a little bit better.”