BARNSLEY Hospice has issued an appeal for people to ‘save its summer’ following the cancellation of its biggest fundraising event - with an ice cream-inspired challenge.

The Bubble Rush, which was due to take place in Locke Park on July 12, raised over £16,000 last year but was cancelled due to coronavirus measures.

The hospice also lost money from the temporary closure of its charity shops, which have recently reopened.

Other external events that generate income, such as the Great North Run in September, have also been cancelled.

To help save its summer of fundraising, Barnsley Hospice is inviting supporters to take on a ’99 Challenge’ which can be anything related to the number 99.

Inspired by the ice cream cone, challenges could include raising £99 through a sponsored walk, running or cycling 99 miles over the next few months or anything else fundraisers can come up with.

Sam Silverwood, fundraising manager at Barnsley Hospice said: “The pandemic has already hit us hard and the loss of our summer income generation is devastating.

“We are heartened by the efforts people have gone to over the last few months to support us, and we are truly grateful.

“We hope the community will now rise to the 99 Challenge, which is a great opportunity to have some fun whilst making a difference to patient care.”

The hospice is still losing around £2,300 a day as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Although its charity shops are now open, fundraising has plummeted, and the 99 Challenge aims to help offset the loss of income.