THE legacy of a young girl killed on one of the county’s most notorious roads will help other families who have experienced similar heartache.
Bubbly Leanne Davies was just 19 when she lost her life in a road accident in Longhope in May last year.
She was a passenger in a silver Vauxhall Corsa which crashed into a wall by the war memorial in the village.
Leanne was an apprentice hairdresser at The Beauty Spot.
Although only spending a year there, she became well liked, had many friends and was popular with customers.
To keep her memory alive, friends and family have decided to set up a charity called Leanne’s Gift, providing financial aid to families who find themselves in similar circumstances.
Currently, there is nothing in place for families to receive financial help from the Government if they lose a child who is over 18 and living at home.
Funeral expenses can be extremely costly and the financial strain is added stress.
Leanne’s Gift is in the early stages of becoming a charity, but it is hoped many other families could now be helped in future.
Charity Commission regulations state Leanne’s Gift will first need an annual income of £5,000 in order to qualify for charitable status.
Leanne’s parents Heather and Paul Davies, her aunt Kirsty East and close family friends Theresa Spencer and Sally Davies have organised a charity ball to mark the first year of her death.
Dad Paul said: “Leanne was a beautiful, bright, bubbly, popular teenager who loved life and left a huge impression on everyone she met. This has not only been a very difficult time for her family but has also left a considerable impact on her many friends who are also struggling to come to terms with life without her.
“Although Leanne’s friends have been amazing and all pulled together to undertake various fundraising events since her death we are still a long way off our target to become registered.
“The venue for the ball is the Speech House Hotel which is set in the heart of the Forest of Dean. It is a stunning venue and we are extremely fortunate to be able to hold the ball in the marquee which has been offered free of charge by the Speech House.”
Entertainment will be provided by singers Jess Burton and Ellie Higgs followed by Sophie Cotterell and her band Scott James and The Revolution. A three-course meal will be served with a chance to win raffle prizes. The Speech House has also donated a courtyard four-poster room.
To donate to the cause, visit the Leanne’s Gift Facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The organisers would like to thank the following people who are helping with the event:
Framed Forget Me Nots in Cinderford who have donated wonderful prizes for the raffle.
Mr T's Discos from Gloucester is DJ for the evening free of charge.
Forest of Dean Chair Cover and Sash Hire are making the marquee look amazing free of charge.
Crazy Occasions gave a discounts on balloons.
Trustees of the charity are making a chocolate hamper for the raffle.