Meet our Pride of Britain Regional Fundraiser 2020 finalists - Damian Cox

When the owners of Wicksteed Park announced with heavy hearts that the attraction faced permanent closure, they hadn't banked on Damian Cox.

The 100-year-old theme park - one of the oldest in the world - was to become the latest victim of the Covid 19 pandemic after lockdown kicked in and its income disappeared overnight.

For Damian, who had spent many days as a child making memories at the Northamptonshire venue, it was just too much to accept.

He headed straight to the park to record a social media video calling on the community to save Wicksteed and get its gates open once again. And the community listened.

Damian Cox was determined to see the gates of Wicksteed Park reopened when it was announced it had gone into administration.

Since then, more than £160,000 has been raised through bucket collections, sponsored hikes, charity picnics and auctions. That, together with a much-needed lottery grant, means Wicksteed Park is open once again and looking to the future.

Damian has been at the heart of so much of that fundraising - and it's earned him a nomination as the Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Fundraiser of the Year for Anglia West.

Wicksteed Park has been delighting families in Kettering for nearly 100 years. Credit: Wicksteed Park Charitable Trust

Wicksteed Park first opened in 1921 thanks to entrepreneur and inventor Charles Wicksteed. He's credited with building the first ever slide and swings.

Damian wanted to ensure that history - and the many years of fun he'd experienced at the park - could be enjoyed by generations to come. And it looks like he may have succeeded.

Watch Graham Stothard's report above to find out more about our finalist Damian Cox.