Not for Profit

Published: December 19, 2019 | Updated: December 20, 2019

Travel agent reaches out to help cancer charity seeking to raise £600k in battle for survival

Shan Simpson of Trolley Dolly Travel.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

A Bournemouth travel agent is doing her bit to help a cancer charity battling for survival.

Earlier this month Wessex Cancer Trust launched a crisis appeal to raise £600,000 by January 31, 2020, or risk having to close.

The charity, which provides free emotional and practical support to people living with cancer, has been supporting local families for almost 40 years.

But after being hit by a ‘perfect storm’ – including an increase in demand for its services, a reduction in people leaving a gift in their will and a decline in the high street which has seen its shop sales fall by 15 per cent – it appealed for people to come to its aid.

Now travel agent Shan Simpson, who operates as Trolley Dolly Travel, has entered into a partnership with the charity.

A proportion of any commission she makes from selling holiday packages to its supporters will go straight to the Trust itself.

Maria Tidy, Wessex Cancer Trust’s Community Engagement Manager covering Dorset, pictured, said: “We’re coming into a very busy time of year for holiday bookings.

“If any of our supporters book their holiday through Shan, then not only will they enjoy her personal service, they will also be contributing to what is a much-needed and – at the moment – very desperate cause.”

Shan said the Trust was very close to her heart, having lost several of her loved ones to cancer.

“My father died five years ago of cancer, and two years ago a dear friend of mine left three very young children behind.

“My mum has also had a breast cancer diagnosis, so I am only too aware of how much patients and families rely on the support of charities such as this,” she said.

Shan, who worked for British Airways for ten years and describes herself as a travel addict, operates as a travel consultant for Dorset-based travel giant, Not Just Travel.

All holidays sold are protected by ABTA regulations, so customers can book with confidence.

Shan said she hoped to be able to tap into the thousands of Trust supporters in the forthcoming busy holiday booking period.

She added: “It just makes sense that at the same time as booking their holiday, they also help a charity that sadly many of us will one day need.”

Maria said: “Every penny will help at this desperate time and I encourage all our supporters thinking of booking their next holiday to contact Shan at Trolley Dolly Travel.”