Monday, August 21, 2017
Charlton fans raise cash in just 12 hours for student nurse to...

Charlton fans raise cash in just 12 hours for student nurse to pay dad’s funeral bills


In just 12 hours big hearted Charlton fans raised thousands needed by a student nurse to pay back the debt for her father’s funeral.
The fans kicked off an online fundraiser after reading about the plight of grieving Beccy Oxley who was refused Government help to cover the cost of her father Ian’s funeral.
The cash-strapped nursing student had to borrow nearly £3,000 to cover the cost of the send off for the life-long Charlton fan who died suddenly, aged 58 in November, with just £600 in the bank.
The 24-year-old had highlighted that she was turned down by the Government’s funeral payments scheme because she was not on benefits.
Ms Oxley, who has to complete a 30-hour unpaid placement as part of her course, in addition to her studies, finds it hard to find extra time for paid shifts.
She told the SLP: “I just couldn’t believe the Charlton fans had raised the money for me in just 12 hours overnight.
“It’s incredible and I have just been in tears. I just want to say a massive thanks to the fans.
“It is just wonderful to feel that I am part of a large loving family. I am just so grateful to them all. It was really great as well to see the comments from people who remembered my dad, and that some players had contributed.”
She said: “My father was a really big fan as he had grown up in Woolwich. When I was born I wasn’t named for four days because he wanted to call me Charlton but my mum didn’t.
“I used to always go to matches with him – I was a daddy’s girl.
“A few years back in 2011 I had a memorial stone carved with ‘Home to Ian and Beccy Oxley’ at the club as part of a scheme for fans when they revamped the Valley ground.
“He died on my birthday. I was really shocked and distressed that I couldn’t get any help to pay for the funeral from the Government because I wanted to give him a proper send off.
“My mum was unable to help with the costs because my nan had also died a few weeks earlier and she was paying for her funeral.”
Andrew Buckland, who set up the Just Giving fundraiser, said: “I was a bit shocked we managed to raise the cash in just 12 hours. I saw a link to Beccy’s story on the Charlton Life forum which I sent round and it very quickly spiralled.”
A statement from Charlton’s Supporters Club board members said: “It was great that there were some substantial contributions and that even ex player Steve Brown donated.
“It was all very moving all round. I think people felt moved that this young girl had got herself into a pickle through no fault of her own.”
Ms Oxley, who is studying at Liverpool John Moores University, is now calling for the Government to change the rules to help other students who find themselves in the same position.
A Department for Work and Pensions spokesman said: “Our sympathies are with Miss Oxley at this difficult time.
“Funeral Payments provide an important safety net for people on benefits, covering the cost of a basic burial or cremation. This ensures we have a sustainable system that supports those most in need, while also being fair to the taxpayer.”
To be eligible for a funeral payment, claimants must get a qualifying income benefit such as income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Pension Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit which includes a disability/severe disability element, Child Tax Credit paid at a higher rent than the family element.
Shujaul Azam | Assistant Editor
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Reporter | Resident of Lewisham for more than 25 years and studied sociology at Goldsmiths. Previously worked for many years as a picture researcher for book and part work publishers and joined The Mercury after studying for a NCTJ at Lambeth College. Big yoga and walking fan – not just in the country but also along the River Thames. Love South East London and wander around Lewisham town centre, Deptford High Street and Greenwich Town Centre at least once a week. Mandy has worked for the Mercury for 14 years.



Charlton fans raise cash in just 12 hours for student nurse to...