The community of Illston-on-the-Hill, Gaulby, & Kings Norton have raised a massive £12,425.43 for LOROS Hospice from Onion Sunday 2017. A yearly event that showcases the incredible generosity and support of the community of these small Leicestershire villages and regulars of the Fox and Goose pub, as well as some impressive onion growing skills!

On 13th November 2017 there was a presentation, where the local community gathered together to present LOROS representative Adrian Walker with the money raised from the event. The money raised will go towards the purchase of two specialised pressure relieving mattresses, which will greatly help the patients at the hospice. Currently, the hospice only has two of these mattresses, for a 31-bedded unit.

Onion Sunday started as a small village tradition over 20 years ago by George and Marlyn Bullers, the then landlord of the Fox and Goose in Illston, with only a prize for a plain onion to be won. Since then, the event has grown – with humour, and a little bit of cheating, remaining central to the festivities.

Now Onion Sunday has raised over an estimated £100,000 for a many number of charities over the years. This year, the chosen charity was LOROS in memory of Richard Cave and Malcolm Ratcliffe.

Adrian Walker from LOROS, who accepted the cheque on Monday evening, said: “It’s fantastic to see a local community event such as this. Bringing everyone together for a real fun day with LOROS at the centre of everybody’s thoughts. The funds raised will be put to very good use in providing specialist pressure relieving mattresses for the benefit of future patients.”

Onion Sunday started as just a plain onion competition, and now has three categories that awards can be won for, as well as a children’s prize. On this day every year, there is an auction that is held with numerous lots of various sizes being sold for well above their RRP. One favourite of many, is a single token pickled onion, which is passed on each year and fetches an average of £70-£100. This year saw everything from a hog roast and raffle through to a Rod Stewart tribute and plenty of laughs.

A special thank you goes to Parson’s Nursery, who over the years have supplied the onion bulbs to the village. Special thanks also go to Henry, Steph and the whole team at the Fox and Goose, who hosted this year’s event.

Onion Sunday happens around the third week of September every year in the village of Illston. You can keep up-to-date with Onion Sunday every year by liking the Fox and Goose Illston’s Facebook page: @IllstonFoxandGoose or get in touch at [email protected].