COLOURFUL bows sold in aid of Fortalice refuge have raised over £5,000 for the charity.

Around 1,000 bows have been made by a variety of people, including Mayor of Bolton Hilary Fairclough.

Cllr Fairclough, who will come to the end of her mayoralty later this month, came up with the idea alongside Sharples neighbour, Lynn Elcoat, who owns local shop Classy Wrap.

She said: "This little idea turned into a mammoth task for Lynn, myself and my husband Don.

“We have been working up to 10 hours a day in the past two weeks, producing what have become very popular bows.”

Cllr Fairclough's close friend, Pam Wright, and Asda Astley Bridge community champion Christine Baldwin joined the bow “production line” to create almost 1,000 bows to sell for the charity.

Last month, Fortalice launched a major fundraising appeal, Fortalice For Survivors, to raise £25,000 as a start to make up an annual £200,000 shortfall made worse by lockdown restrictions.

Chief executive Gill Smallwood said: “Hilary, Don and friends have done a remarkable thing in a very short time. We have all bought these lovely bows which don’t only raise much-needed funds but also keep Fortalice’s profile high in the community.

“I’d like to thank everyone involved for all their hard work and support – it does make a difference.”