School community pulls together to raise money in memory of deputy head Dave Clark

From left, Mr Clark's daughters Hannah Clark and Helen Kellett, with his wife Jane Clark, Oliver Stewart (Year 9), Nadine Stacey (head of UK operations at Applegreen UK presenting a cheque for £11,000 to Sophie Bendelow, of the Great North Air Ambulance Service), Will Arnold (Year 11) Unity Shrimpton (Year 13) and headteacher Jenna Potter.

An appeal to support the Great North Air Ambulance Service in memory of Richmond School deputy head Dave Clark has received an overwhelming response.

Mr Clark’s family announced they would like any donations in his memory to help the work of the GNAAS in the area following the popular teacher’s tragic death last month.

The family and school leaders say they have been astounded by the response to the appeal, which includes a donation of £11,000 by Applegreen Plc.

The money will be used purchase a Lucus 3 machine, a specialist piece of equipment that delivers chest compressions for patients suffering cardiac arrest.

Service station company Applegreen’s head of UK operations, Nadine Stacey, was a former pupil at Richmond School and her daughter is a current student.

Nadine said: “At Applegreen we are delighted to support the GNAAS during these unprecedented times.

“We are grateful to all healthcare workers, essential service providers, staff and suppliers at this difficult time.”

Students at the school have also come up with their own fundraising initiatives.

Will Arnold, in Year 11, is organising a walk, cycle or run challenge from October 24 to November 9 in recognition of Mr Clark’s love of sport and the great outdoors.

Everyone is invited to take part in the event.

More details can be found at

Year 13 pupil Unity Shrimpton has been learning a selection of Mr Clark’s favourite songs, from Dougie MacLean to Sons of Zion, and will be busking in Richmond market place during half-term and also after college in the first week of November.

Oliver Stewart, Year 9, brought in a luxury hamper to school to raffle and this has raised £606 for the charity.

While Shakari Walters, a keen baker, is planning a bake sale or raffle of baked goods once the current C19 restrictions have been lifted.

Sophie Bendelow, of GNAAS, said: “The students at Richmond are showing that out of something so horrendous, something positive can emerge.

“We are touched by their selfless actions and the support they are being given by Applegreen, the school and the wider community. This money will have a positive effect on other people’s lives.

“It will ease suffering and may save lives.”

Headteacher Jenna Potter said:  “At a time when, as a school, we have been genuinely challenged and deeply saddened by the loss of Mr Clark, who was such an important part of our staff team, my faith in the goodness of young people has been reinforced further by the response of our students.

“They have been thoughtful, creative and resilient, putting to one side their own sadness to think of others.

“Without any doubt they have exceeded the very high standards that we all expect of them.

“This is genuinely a time that as a staff we feel humbled to witness their actions.

“We are also immensely grateful to Nadine Stacey, and her colleagues at Applegreen, for their tremendous donation of the Lucus machine. It is wonderful to hear that they will be continuing to support the Great North Air Ambulance Service in the future.”