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Armagh legend’s personal thank you letter from ‘fellow dog lover’ PM Rishi Sunak

Willie Nugent Point of Light

Armagh’s fundraising champion, Willie Nugent, has received a special personalised thank you letter directly from the Prime Minister.

It comes a month after Willie was officially honoured with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s daily Point of Light award for his contributions to charity.

Willie has been fundraising for 50 years and has raised over £1 million for charity in that time.

Willie is the 2229th recipient of the award, which was first launched in April 2014 to recognise outstanding individuals making a positive change within their community and inspiring others.

In a letter, delivered to Willie this week, the Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, said: “I want to thank you for your incredible acts of kindness and compassion, stretching over half a century.

“It is truly impressive how over that time you have raised over £1 million for charity by completing more than 600 different challenges and even breaking a world record.

“Since embarking on your first charity challenge in 1979, cycling from Donegal to Armagh, you have inspired thousands of people to get behind you and support a range of causes, from animal shelters to helping children in hospital.

“As a fellow dog lover, I think it is fantastic how you’ve chronicled your dog Maisie’s adventures, bringing joy to so many young readers and raising funds for causes including the Cancer Centre at Belfast City Hospital.

“To recognise these many achievements, and your remarkable service to your community, I am delighted to be able to name you as the UK’s 2229th Point of Light.

“Congratulations and I wish you every success for your next challenge.”

Speaking at the time, Willie said: “It’s a great honour to receive the Points of Light Award. Thank you for this recognition. It will motivate me to continue with my fundraising for charity.

“I’d like to point out I’ve always had great support during my 50 years of fundraising and I can honestly say, ‘I have never walked alone’. Over the years I’ve always had great support from family and friends and not forgetting my faithful dogs who over the years have taken me for walks every day keeping me fit and healthy.”

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