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‘Mr and Mrs Bourne’ present birthday gift to St Barnabas Lincolnshire Hospice

Ted and Dot Kelby, pictured with Janie McCormick from St Barnabas Lincolnshire Hospice
Ted and Dot Kelby, pictured with Janie McCormick from St Barnabas Lincolnshire Hospice

A couple who asked guests attending their joint 90th birthday party to make a donation to charity instead of bringing presents have raised £725 for a cause close to their hearts.

Ted and Dot Kelby, who live in St Paul’s Gardens, Bourne, and have been married for 67 years, held the celebration at The Red Lion, in Warmington.

Dot turned 90 on July 18 and Ted’s birthday is on October 3 and they decided to plan the party for August 22 – between the two dates.

The couple asked for donations to St Barnabas Lincolnshire Hospice and were delighted with amount raised.

Ted, who was chairman of Bourne Urban District Council in 1968/69, said: “We don’t need presents at our age – we already have everything we need. We decided we’d prefer to ask for donations to charity instead.

“St Barnabas Lincolnshire Hospice seemed the perfect choice. I was the eldest of four boys and the three others are sadly all dead now. The last to go, Roy, was cared for by the hospice at home for around six months.

“He wanted to die at home and the care he received was superb.”

Dot said the couple had two friends who had also been helped during the last years of their lives by carers from St Barnabas Lincolnshire Hospice. She added: “The party was lovely. We had more than 80 people there in a marquee and enjoyed a delicious meal.

“The rain was torrential towards the end, but everyone still had a great time.”

Ted worked as postman in Bourne for 30 years and said he knew “everyone” in the town. As well as serving on Bourne Urban District Council, he was also a magistrate and chairman of Bourne United Charities. Ted and Dot were known as “Mr and Mrs Bourne”.

In later life Ted worked as a road safety officer and got posted to Hull. He and Dot moved to Beverley, where they stayed for 14 years before returning to Bourne.

Dot worked as a receptionist at Hornsea Pottery while they were living in Yorkshire. She had previously worked as a post office clerk, telephonist and in a dry cleaning shop.

The couple, who have three children, three grandchildren and six great grandchildren, have been back in Bourne for 30 years.

St Barnabas Lincolnshire Hospice provides free of charge services for terminal care patients across Lincolnshire.

As well as providing care in the community, it also operates an in-patient unit in Lincoln.

Community events fundraiser Janie McCormick visited the couple at their home to officially accept the £725.

She said: “This is a very generously donation which I am delighted to accept on behalf of St Barnabas Lincolnshire Hospice.

“It costs £4 million per year to keep the charity going and, aside from some outside funding to help run hospice at home services, we are reliant on donations and fundraising to achieve that.

“It has been a pleasure to meet Ted and Dot and to hear about their party.”


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