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Southend postie Keith is Pride of Essex community champion

23 Nov 2018, 11:16

https://www.basildonstandard.co.uk/news ... -champion/

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Postman Keith Elgar has dedicated 20 years to supporting charities – while Battlesbridge 8-year-old Finley Ranson picked up the child of courage award and 14-year-old Ellie Challis claimed the inspirational youth award.

Keith, 59, has become renowned in the Southend area – not just as a loyal postie – but also for his fundraising.

He has raised £40,000 in the UK for various charities and €12,000 for orphans abroad.

Keith completed many charity events, such as pushing his red-postbarrow up Ben Nevis, taking apart in the 160-mile Blaxhill bike ride and the Coniston Lake Challenge.

Of all the challenges, one which stands out to Keith was a 24-hour bike ride, starting in Southend and making his way to Grimsby last year

He said: “It was so humbling, to be in that room, surrounded by amazing people, especially the children.

“It makes you take a step back.

“When I was a lot younger - a child - my mum died through cancer, and I also lost a colleague, and seeing the treatment they received, compared to my mum all those years ago, I just wanted to give something back.”

Ellie Challis, from Clacton but who has family in south Essex, claimed the inspirational youth award.

Ellie is a paraplegic athlete who, despite having lost her limbs to meningitis, is going from strength to strength in the world of swimming.

Youngster Finley was awarded the child of courage award for his kind nature and generosity, despite battling his own illness.

Finley is totally tube fed due to extreme allergic reactions causing internal bleeding.

The youngster saved up his pocket money and bought the children on the ward Easter eggs, even though he isn’t able to eat them himself.

He wanted to do a skydive, but was too young, so mum, Rhys, dived with a group of friends and raised £10,000 for Great Ormond Street.

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