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Axed factory workers donate £30,000

Workers whose jobs are to be axed with the closure of a doomed factory have donated £30,000 to charity.

Staff at the Alcan Lynemouth smelter in Northumberland have donated money from their social fund to three good causes in the north-east of England.

It comes after Rio Tinto Alcan, which owns the plant, announced plans to close the site in November, leaving 515 people jobless.

The cash and proceeds from the sale of the clubhouse were donated to the Great North Air Ambulance Service, the Children's Heart Unit Fund (CHUF) at The Freeman hospital in Newcastle and Archie's Dream.

CHUF spokesman Ivan Hollingsworth, 36, of Whitley Bay, North Tyneside, said: "These men's livelihoods are on the line and yet they have chosen to do this act of incredible charity.

"The money they have donated will make a real difference. It is a heart-warming feeling."

The father-of-one, whose three-year-old son Sebastian was helped by the charity, said the workers should feel proud.

"They could have spent the money on a party, or shared it out amongst themselves and who could blame them."

The plant's social club was opened in the 1970s and members have always contributed to raise money for events and trips.

Club chairman Roland Sanderson, who has worked at the plant for 35 years, said workers decided the money should be donated to charity rather than shared out.

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