A “hippy” haired Bolton councillor who has become known for his long hair since the start of lockdown has taken part in a sponsored head shave for charity.

Cllr Richard Silvester first started growing his hair during the various Covid lockdowns over the last two years, when restrictions made visiting the barbers difficult and admitted that council colleagues found he had turned into “something of a hippy” over this time.

Now, the Horwich North East councillor has revealed that he had been growing his hair long in preparation for a sponsored shave that has already raised more than £500 for various charities across the borough.

Cllr Silvester said: “When the £500 was raised, I had it all shaved off and this was livestreamed on Facebook from Jupiters Barbers in Bolton town centre.

“The Mayor of Bolton, Cllr Linda Thomas and Consort Len Thomas were there and I presented them with a cheque once I had been transformed!”

The Bolton News:

Cllr Silvester with Mayor of Bolton Cllr Linda Thomas and Consort Len Thomas 

Cllr Silvester’s recent long hair had come as a surprise to many of his friends and colleagues who had previously known him to have kept his hair short, but he hopes that now his reasons are clear it will help encourage others to donate and to do what they can for charity.

Photos show the transformative effect that the cut centre has had on the Horwich councillor and he hopes that the money raised will have a similarly transformative effect on the borough itself.

The Bolton News:

Richard Silvester presenting a cheque after his haircut

Cllr Silvester said: "It has been to raise £500 for the Bolton Mayor's charities, so £100 each for Fortalice; Backup; Urban Outreach; Halliwell Befriending and The Octagon Theatre.”

He added: “A further £360 has been raised and this is increasing so I will donate this to the UNICEF Ukraine Crisis fund for children.

“With what is going on in the Ukraine at the moment and with children suffering because of the terrible events, I think that this is the most appropriate thing to do. 

“So hopefully more than £400 will be going to UNICEF."

The crowdfunder is still open and donations can be made by searching for Richard Silvester’s page on Justgiving.com.