Case Studies

David HolmesDavid Holmes 

David lost his father to cancer and then his mother was diagnosed a short while afterwards. Whilst taking time away from work to support her through chemotherapy and also supporting his family and two children.This affected him financially. We were only too pleased to help with his mortgage dring this difficult time




The Whiting Family




The Whiting Family

Paul is a serving RM employee, currently on a career break to support his wife, Jan, who is paralysed from the shoulders down and confined to a wheelchair.

The Fund has supported Paul and Jan with £1,500 towards household adaptations, allowing Jan a level of independence with a downstairs bedroom and wetroom. 
The work is now underway, which is great news for all the family and particularly for Jan, whose standard of living will improve considerably. Paul and Jan have 3 children and want to try and get back to some normality with dad going back to work. He says his children have been so supportive and helpful with their Mum. He is applying to a children’s young carers’ charity to ensure his they receive the opportunity to gain a break from their caring responsibilities and spend time with other children and to enjoy a normal childhood



Catherine Poole's Story- in her own wordscatherine

Catherine has worked for Royal Mail, at the Cirencester Delivery Office for 12 years........

I ended up being stood in court one day, holding my baby in her carry seat as I defended my home, the place where she was safe. On this occasion I managed to get a suspended sentence on my rent payments in order that I catch them up. We had two full time wages coming into our tiny flat but only my wages seemed to pay the bills and it just didn’t stretch enough. Nothing got better and I saw no money from my husband’s wages.  After a while I was a single parent and I had to make sure I carried on for my daughter’s sake. I could pay my rent but couldn’t pay the arrears that had built up badly, so I was due to be evicted and I had very little time left.  I tried everywhere I could to get this money to stop the landlord taking the property from me, I needed this flat. Bank loans, credit cards, credit cards for people with bad credit, door caller loans, Wonga etc. etc. Everyone just kept saying no!! I found out about the Rowland Hill Fund from The Courier and my local union rep. Never will they help me I thought, it sounded too good to be true.

Someone who would help me and I didn’t have to pay it back?? There must be a mistake.

 I read stories about the fund helping families with disabled children and husbands/wives. That’s what the funds for. I thought.  I gave them a ring and after the phone call and other protocol (sorry it is ten years ago) they said they would help me. Wow!! These people are going to help. They gave me £1000. I got the money and went straight to pay my rent. My home was saved and now safe for my daughter to grow up in. It made me stronger more determined. At the time 10 years ago I had other debt which amounted to some £25,000 including a car on hp which had been repossessed. Now my flat was safe I could move on and sort everything out. I wouldn’t answer the phone and I dreaded opening the post. But one by one I sorted it all out. After a few years of being arrears free the council offered me a beautiful bungalow in the countryside with a garden for my daughter to play. It was such a lovely little rural place just what we needed a fresh start. I built a home while my daughter grew playing in a secure garden, I grew veg too!!

Ten years later after Rowland Hill Fund helped me; I have paid off every last penny of my debt. I have an extended family including two step children and two step grandchildren one only born last Tuesday. A beautiful 3 bedroom house with great gardens, an allotment where I still grow veg, a mortgage and my daughter who will always be by my side as she was the first day I was stood in court.

I can never thank the Rowland Hill Fund enough for helping me, but as I found out you can donate via payroll giving, so now every week from my wages I give a little back to the fund, no one knows who may need it next. I certainly know that it’s a great help.

Why did I want to be an ambassador?

They helped me

We recently had someone sacked from our office for stealing and although that is bad, I am sure that in the beginning before perhaps it turned into an addiction that she too fell on hard times. I wonder if the Rowland Hill Fund could have helped her, through her own fault she is now jobless and will struggle in the years ahead of her. Don’t get me wrong she doesn’t need sympathy because we all get put on the target when things go missing but “what if she had known about the Rowland Hill Fund” would her story be any different today.

After having a chat with Shan the last week about today, I was chatting to a colleague of mine about The Rowland Hill Fund. His immediate reaction what is that? We had a little chatter about what they do and that I had used them before. He shrugged his shoulders and said to me “if only I had known” his wife had cancer while she had her treatment and operations she couldn’t work so he was the only earner for his household.  He said it could have helped him too. Instead he was either at the hospital or working extra hours/schedules attendance 5 nights a week and overtime. Maybe he could have been with his wife more if he had known about the fund.

I hope this has helped you all today to hear about my personal experience of the fund.

Thank you


A canal side walk with his new rollator!David Leppard

Pictured is a very happy David Leppard with his new, sporty-looking walking aid, called a rollator and purchased by the Fund.

David, a Royal Mail pensioner, who suffers with severe arthritis and balance problems, says, “I am extremely grateful to the fund’s trustees for their kind support and generosity on taking delivery of my Rollator. It was an added bonus to discover that it bears identical livery to the Royal Mail colours!”



"Thank you enough for getting us out of the hole we were in
Barry Minshall!"



A card we received from Barry Minshall and his wife read..........

"I would like to thank you on behalf of my wife and myself for your help with our council tax bill. We can't thank you enough for getting us out of the hole we were in, and could not get out of. It has been a great relief to us, as it was making us both ill"

 We paid their outstanding council tax bill of £1,120.75


  A Stroke at the age of 30   

Stephen Williams  

After suffering a stroke at the age of 30, Stephen Williams has been left with a clenched right hand and a weakness down his right side. He applied for a Disability Facility Grant, as he needed essential household adaptations. We paid Stephen's contribution of £1,500. Although Mr Williams is no longer able to work, he now volunteers,
once a week at his old Royal Mail office.
Good Luck,  Stephen!






No hot water for weeks!

That was the miserable predicament of Maureen and John Hunt and their autistic son, Darren, when their boiler wascondemned. Washing and bathing were a nightmare! The Fund paid for a new boiler and the hot water is running again in the Hunt household!

John and DarrenJohn and Maureen Hunt

                                         John with Darren, left,  and on the right with Maureen                                                                                                                        

14 Years Old and Diagnosed with Cancer!

Dealing with the devastating news that their 14 year old son has been diagnosed with cancer, has resulted in dad being off work, suffering from stress and anxiety. Mum has temporarily given up work to care for them. This has put the family under severe financial strain and the household bills have started to mount up. A grant to pay off these bills and money towards travelling expenses to and from hospital have removed some of the pressure from this family.




 Rent and Deposit Needed to Secure Alternative Accommodation

Neil worked on the Travelling Post Office (TPO Train service). In 2004 the TPO was closed and he opted for the redundancy package.  

After various other jobs, ill health made it impossible for him to work and he lost his home.  After a period of homelessness, he was rehoused in temporary accommodation, which ends in August, when he needs to secure alternative housing. For this he will need a deposit, plus one month’s rent in advance and admin fees.  We have offered  him a pledge of up to £900 for this, when he finds a suitable flat. 

Neil is well now and is hoping to go back to work. We wish him good luck!


Mark, Mortgage Arrears, £2,500


Mark, 33, was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2010. He suffered a seizure at work and was taken to hospital; it was two months before the brain tumour was diagnosed.

Mark had surgery to remove the tumour and was off work for approximately 9 months and regrettably in January 2012 he had to have further surgery on the tumour. Mark said that initial indications are that he is making a good recovery. He returned to work in the latter part of 2012 and is now back on a duty he feels able to do. 2 periods of long term sick absence have caused him financial difficulty. Mark had endeavoured to keep in contact with his mortgage provider, but he recently failed to meet the agreed payment to reduce his arrears and he has been threatened with repossession proceedings if he does not clear/reduce the arrears owed.