Alan’s project in Africa gets busy

Alan Wolstencroft on a previous visit to Sierra Leone
Alan Wolstencroft on a previous visit to Sierra Leone

A Banbury businessman who has raised more than £150,000 to build eight new classrooms and two toilet blocks in Sierra Leone has said the project is gathering pace following the Ebola crisis.

Alan Wolstencroft runs Fashion Fabrics in Parsons Street and launched the project last year at the Liverpool Community School in Waterloo, Freetown. Within six months the first block of four classrooms was built and furnished and work to paint the second classroom was due to start.

But during the summer and the outbreak of Ebola, no building work took place and the cost of building materials increased.

Mr Wolstencroft, who does talks about the project to businesses in the town, was given the update early last week.

He said: “What had been achieved in six months was beyond my wildest dreams and I would like to thank everyone who donated to make this possible.

Mr Wolstencroft has already done three talks this year. Added fundraising support from organisations such as Banbury Rotary Club and Goodwill and Growth for Africa UK has meant a toilet block at Waterloo School can be built as well as two classrooms at Christian Hope School.

He said: “I can’t wait to go back to Freetown to see all the progress that has been made in the last year and kickstart the new classrooms at Christian Hope School. I am hoping the situation in Sierra Leone improves this year.”