A Wiltshire pub has raised £3,360 for a local charity for the homeless by asking customers if they were happy to have a £1 donation added to their restaurant bill.

Not a single diner at The Red Lion at East Chisenbury, near Pewsey, refused throughout 2023 producing a substantial windfall for Salisbury Trust for the Homeless (STFH), which helps homeless people rebuild their lives.

Salisbury Journal: Gordon Pardy of STFH (left) receives a giant cheque from (left to right) Martin Edwards, Guy

Gordon Pardy, Head of Fundraising for STFH, was presented with a giant cheque for this amount by Guy Manning, who has owned the Red Lion with his wife Brittany for the past 15 years, pub manager Martin Edwards, and local resident Barry Chamberlain, whose own fundraising initiative began the link between the pub and the charity.

Barry first heard about STFH through former work colleague Barbara Wood, a volunteer and fundraiser for the charity.

Barbara, who died last year, told him about its good work, and he decided to help by selling bundles of kindling wood at the pub.

Stacked in the Red Lion’s front porch, these have raised £50 this winter. Barry’s links with the Red Lion go back a long way – his wife Carol grew up in the pub when her father was the landlord.

So he was well-placed to persuade Guy Manning that STFH would be the ideal beneficiary for a fundraising initiative at the Red Lion.

“I had been wanting to help the less fortunate and it is appropriate to give something back to people who are struggling with housing and food bills,” said Guy, who had already established his charitable credentials by driving a truckload of blankets and clothes to Ukraine after the Russian invasion.

“We are incredibly grateful to Guy, Martin, Barry and everybody at the Red Lion for their help,” said Gordon Pardy.

“STFH is a local charity which receives no funding from either central or local government and so we are very much dependant on the support of organizations and individuals in Wiltshire.”

STFH has helped hundreds of people turn their lives around in recent years. Founded in 1987, the charity helps clients regain confidence and self-esteem, learn life skills, find education, training and employment opportunities, and access permanent accommodation, so returning to independent living. Support needs include mental health issues, learning disability, emotional support, drug and alcohol misuse, anti-social behaviour, budgeting, benefits claims and tenancy support.