South Yorks teenager Tabitha Howe honoured her friend’s memory by ‘walking down the aisle’ in a wedding dress chosen from a Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice’s charity shop .
16-year-old Tabitha, a pupil at St Bernard’s Catholic High School in Rotherham, took part in a mock wedding ceremony at her school on Thursday 29th January.
She was nominated as ‘the bride’ by her classmates and then chose to make a donation to Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice, in South Anston, in order to borrow a wedding dress from the Rotherham shop’s vast collection of beautiful dresses.
Tabitha’s school friend Natalie Maw passed away at Bluebell Wood two years ago and so Tabitha chose to support the charity through the school event.
Tabitha’s mum, Natalie Howe, said: “It is amazing to be able to help Bluebell Wood in this way.”
“I’d heard about the Rotherham shop’s huge collection of prom dresses and wedding dresses, so it just felt right to be able to give something back in order to use a wedding dress.”
“The school always goes through a marriage ceremony with the pupils, each child has a role.”
“She looked fabulous and I’d like to thank Bluebell Wood’s shops for this opportunity.”
Mel Butterley, assistant shop manager at Bluebell Wood’s Rotherham shop, said: “We really pride ourselves on the range and quality of prom and wedding dresses we have here; we have some amazing donations of items, which all help to raise vital funds for our hospice.
“This event sounded like something a bit different and we’re pleased to be able to help in memory of Natalie.”
“The children we care for at Bluebell Wood are given the very best specialist care and our hospice is filled with love and laughter.”
“We are really well supported by our community and I am pleased that Tabitha enjoyed wearing the dress.”
Bluebell Wood has nine charity shops across the region and is planning to open a tenth this spring.
It takes over £3m to keep the hospice running.