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Uplifting news: Strangers clean gravestones and Captain Moore gets postmark

A round-up of Monday’s feelgood stories.

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Undated handout photos of a before and image of a grave stone that has been cleaned by Ryan van Emmenis and his children, who are using their daily exercise to clean gravestones in local cemeteries.

Undated handout photos of a before and image of a grave stone that has been cleaned by Ryan van Emmenis and his children, who are using their daily exercise to clean gravestones in local cemeteries.

Undated handout photos of a before and image of a grave stone that has been cleaned by Ryan van Emmenis and his children, who are using their daily exercise to clean gravestones in local cemeteries.

A family have been cleaning people’s gravestones and a special postmark will celebrate the upcoming 100th birthday of NHS fundraiser Captain Tom Moore in Monday’s uplifting news.

These are the lighter stories you might have missed.

– Family use daily lockdown exercise to clean strangers’ gravestones

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(Ryan van Emmenis/PA)

(Ryan van Emmenis/PA)

PA

(Ryan van Emmenis/PA)

A father and his children are using their daily exercise to clean gravestones in local cemeteries.

Ryan van Emmenis, from Winsford in Cheshire, has cleaned more than 20 headstones with help from his children since lockdown started last month.

It started after a friend posted a picture on social media of his sister’s grave, and Mr van Emmenis, who runs a cleaning company called Cleaning Helps, noticed it had become weathered so offered to go and clean it.

“I thought ‘I can do this more’,” he told the PA news agency. “When I’m out on my walks I pass a couple of churches and there are some really old headstones and tombstones.

“I thought ‘I’ll just take a out a little brush, some cleaning products etc and as I pass when I stop for my little break I’ll have a little drink of my water and do a bit each day’.

“You see results and you’re like ‘oh, this is great’ so I just wanted to keep doing it.”

– Island’s key workers get royal stamp of approval

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(Isle of Man Post Office/PA)

(Isle of Man Post Office/PA)

PA

(Isle of Man Post Office/PA)

Key workers are being celebrated on the Isle of Man with a new set of stamps that carry a royal seal of approval from the Queen.

The stamps, to be issued by the island’s Post Office, are on the theme of Love, Faith, Care, Compassion, Work, Community, Words and Science – all bearing the message, “Will #CarryUsThrough”.

Due out on Monday, they will temporarily replace generic stamps to bear the message of support for key workers in the NHS and the community.

Howard Quayle, chief minister for the Isle of Man government, said: “The way in which so many of us have rallied to support each other and, in particular, look out for the most vulnerable members of our society has been humbling and inspiring.

“Our community spirit is what makes our island such a unique and special place, and I think this is perfectly reflected by this stamp issue.”

– Special postmark issued to celebrate Captain Tom Moore’s birthday

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(Royal Mail/PA)

(Royal Mail/PA)

PA

(Royal Mail/PA)

All mail sent from Monday will be stamped with a special postmark to celebrate the upcoming 100th birthday of NHS fundraiser Captain Tom Moore.

The Royal Mail postmark, which will be applied to all stamped post between April 26 and May 1, reads: “Happy 100th Birthday Captain Thomas Moore NHS fundraising hero 30th April 2020.”

The Second World War veteran has raised more than £28 million for the NHS by walking laps of his garden in Bedfordshire ahead of his milestone birthday.

The postal recognition comes after Royal Mail had to adapt its sorting machines in the South Midlands Mail Centre to re-route all post to Captain Tom into a dedicated collection box.

– 2.6 Challenge raises more than £4.6 million for UK charities

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(Katey Edwards/PA)

(Katey Edwards/PA)

PA

(Katey Edwards/PA)

More than £4.6 million has been raised for UK charities by people completing various challenges in lieu of the London Marathon.

The 40th edition of the sporting event was replaced by the 2.6 Challenge on Sunday after it was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Race organisers launched the campaign to help the charity sector which is facing a £4 billion shortfall, according to the National Council for Voluntary Organisations.

The event, on the day the marathon was due to be held, saw thousands of people take part in gruelling, fun and unusual challenges based around the numbers 2.6 or 26.

PA