PENSIONER Gaynor Emery recently celebrated turning 70 with a birthday party where the focus was very much on charity.

Friends and family of Mrs Emery helped raise £700 by giving donations in lieu of presents.

The money was raised at a birthday party at Ledbury Royal British Legion Club in Church Road, attended by more than 80 people.

The money raised by partygoers and friends who could not attend will be equally divided between the Air Ambulance “which is often seen flying over Ledbury on a regular basis and has saved so many lives”, and Bowel Cancer UK.

Mrs Emery chose this medical charity after a friend of Mrs Emery’s made a full recovery, “thanks to the NHS.”

She said of her party: “With my age, I did have boxes of chocolates and flowers, but I’d rather have donations for charity.”

Mrs Emery, of Oakland Drive is no stranger to fundraising as this was the third time she has used a landmark in her life to help others.

Ten years ago, she asked for donations from her 60th birthday and raised £650 for diabetes research, because it is an illness which afflicts several members of her family.

Then, when she and her husband Keith celebrated their 40th anniversary, she raised £750 which was divided between the diabetes charity and Help for Heroes.

She said: “You see no many injured people, and they don’t always get the support they deserve.”

Thanks to the success of her 70th birthday party, Mrs Emery is thanking friends who helped with the refreshments, The Shooting Stars band for the entertainment “and the generosity of family and friends in making my day so memorable.”