TWO schoolboy pals from Springhead were able to put a reunion date in their diaries thanks to Dr Kershaw’s Hospice’s popular fund-raising calendar.
Graham Harrison and Granville Cheetham, both former pupils at Saddleworth School, hadn’t seen each other for more than three decades.
But when Granville, who now lives in Harrogate, received his 2018 calendar, he spotted one of the images was a picture by his old mate Graham.
So, when the calendar for 2019 – the 30th anniversary of the Royton based cancer care facility – was launched, Graham and Granville plus their wives enjoyed their latest catch-up.
Graham, now living in Thornham, is again one of eight local artists whose work (of Tandle Hills and Dogford Road) features in the calendar.
“I was in the RAF for 22 years and every year I used to receive the calendar from my auntie,” explained Granville.
“It was great to have a reminder of Oldham scenes when you are away.
“Any Oldham ex pats should think about having a calendar sent out because it is fantastic to look at.
“I had tried to contact Graham previously but I don’t use Facebook or Twitter so that didn’t help. But through Dr Kershaws, it’s worked out brilliantly.
“We went to junior school together in Springhead and were even best man for each other. And we still have the same wives,” he laughed.
The remaining artists are: Grotton-based Richard Darlington, Kevin Haynes, Cliff Murray, Enid Sutcliffe, Robert Lees, Laurence Worrall and Anne Firby.
Dr Kershaw’s calendar was widely known for featuring the work of local artist and charity supporter David Ford.
After David passed away in December 2015, the spotlight was shone on former students of his art classes including Graham.
“It is a great project and it is something we are really proud of,” said income generation and communications manager Dave Whalley.
“It is really heart-warming and raises significant funds for us.”
To mark the 30th anniversary, the Hospice board has ambitious plans for a major re-build of the end of life and palliative care facility into 12-ensuite rooms.
“There are exciting plans and it is an amazing organisation,” added Dave.
“A lot of people have a perception of this place but it is so full of life.
“The nurses and the staff do everything so the people who are here and their families get the very best care and attention.”
The 2019 calendar costs £3.75 and for more details on how to obtain one call 0161 624 9984 or email firstname.lastname@example.org