Pride of Britain 2022: The woman whose 'pudding club' has raised tens of thousands for Macmillan

Each year, ITV West Country searches for a Regional Fundraiser of the Year as part of the national Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Award.

One of our eight shortlisted nominees is Carol Crilly, a former bank manager from Tewkesbury. Since she retired 12 years ago, she has devoted her life to local fundraising.

Carol leads the teams which put together the Tewkesbury Big Weekend - an annual festival of fun and fundraising - and the Tewkesbury Christmas Lights: another major public event which sees the town's medieval streets fill with stalls and decorations.

The Tewkesbury Christmas Lights attract thousands of people. Credit: Photo Studio Tewkesbury

"It it gives me lots of pleasure, of making people smile, making people laugh," Carol said.

"That's what it's all about for me. I don't need anything else. It's just the pleasure of doing it. And I enjoy it."

Perhaps Carol's biggest achievement is her fundraising for the Macmillan cancer charity. She and her Tewkesbury team have raised £180,000 for Macmillan over the years. Much of it comes from their popular Pudding Club, where people are encouraged to bring homemade puddings, tuck in and donate.

People tucking in at a recent Pudding Club event in Tewkesbury. Credit: Sam Morris Artist

"She's a one-off: a very unique fundraiser, never deterred by anything that goes wrong in fundraising," says Catherine North, Macmillan's regional fundraising manager for the South West.

Carol was nominated for a Pride of Britain Award by her friend Mary Butcher, who decided it was high time all Carol's hard work got wider recognition.

"She's amazing in all that she does with this fundraising," Mary said. "She doesn't think she does much. But she does."

  • ITV West Country will reveal the regional winner on Friday 30th September in our 6pm programme.