LETTER: Join in the ‘bring your bear’ event

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Last week, Her Majesty the Queen celebrated her Summer Birthday. It was a splendid affair, with Trooping the Colour and the firing of guns in St James’s Park. Bands played, there was a flypast of planes, and everyone cheered when she appeared on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. Quite right too, for she has been a wonderful queen and has dedicated her life to serving the country.

Not everybody knows it, but bears also have two birthdays a year. Paddington’s summer one is on the 25th June, and for many years now he has dedicated himself to raising money for his favourite charity – Action Medical Research.

There the similarity ends, of course, but I think it would be wonderful if all the other bears in this country got together to celebrate the occasion. It doesn’t have to be a grand occasion like the Queen’s. Paddington doesn’t like guns for a start. He put some cotton wool in his ears one year and forgot to take it out for several days, so everyone else thought he had lost his hearing!

As a way of saying ‘thank you’ to Paddington, Action Medical Research have come to the rescue with their Bring your Bear event, and schools, nurseries and children’s groups everywhere are invited to take part. For a modest donation of £2, which goes towards vital research to help sick babies and children, they will make it a day to remember. It will be money well spent.

So, the message to all the above groups who wish to take part is don’t forget to register at www.action.org.uk/bringyourbear and you will receive a free fundraising kit full of ideas. In case anyone without a bear should feel they can’t take part, any much loved soft toy will be more than welcome. You have Paddington’s word for that. The more the merrier.

And, look out for some exciting activity around Paddington’s summer birthday. He would be most grateful if you would get involved. More details at www.action.org.uk/paddingtonbear

Speaking for myself, I might put cotton wool in my own ears on the 25th June!

Michael Bond,

London