McBride Retail SPAR stores across the country were busy at the start of the summer with the return of the annual Blooming Great Tea Party for Marie Curie, raising an incredible £20,000.

The stores had a wide range of activities for local shoppers and families to enjoy during the event, which took place across the group’s 15 stores in Counties Tyrone, Fermanagh and Armagh. Each store had a range of activities from face painting to delicious refreshments and exciting giveaways, and the Fermanagh Lakeside SPAR even saw a staff member taking part in a sponsored head shave, all in aid of Marie Curie.

The stores’ local communities got involved in the initiative this year, with local businesses donating prizes for raffles and refreshments from local suppliers for tea parties across the multiple stores.

Peter McBride, owner of McBride Retail explained; “All 15 of our stores really took the Blooming Great Tea Party to heart for another year, and we’re particularly proud of our Cabragh store where the team showed amazing team spirit and came together to raise an incredible £5,375 alone.

“Store manager, Tomas and his whole team worked with the local community, businesses, schools and community groups to make their tea party such a success. We’d like to thank our neighbours in the local community for donating a long list of exciting raffle prizes, and big thanks go to the pupils of St Mary’s Primary School and Panda Cross community playgroup who donated money they raised through a non-uniform day, which was so generous of the young people in our community.”

Just last year, the McBride Group celebrated raising a total of £100,000 for Marie Curie through various initiatives, reaching their own milestone since the SPAR partnership began in 2017. SPAR stores across Northern Ireland have now raised over £600,500 for the charity in just five years.

Anne Hannan, Partnership Manager at Marie Curie, commented, “We want to thank the whole McBride Retail group for their continuous support, and huge fundraising success. It will go such a long way in helping families in communities across the country.

“It’s fantastic to see these stores getting their local communities involved, showing an amazing level of support with generous donations from local schools, businesses and community groups, which means so much to us at Marie Curie.

“We want to extend our thanks to SPAR NI, all the teams and their shoppers across Northern Ireland who make this vital fundraising bigger and better every year.”