Foundation set up in memory of much-loved Lightcliffe dad Nick Smith to close

Nick Smith with his wife Rachel and children, Hadyn and Georgia.Nick Smith with his wife Rachel and children, Hadyn and Georgia.
Nick Smith with his wife Rachel and children, Hadyn and Georgia.
A charity which has boosted care and support for people with Motor Neurone Disease (MND) in honour of a Lightcliffe father is to shut.

The Nick Smith Foundation has announced it will end its charity activities on what will be the five year anniversary of Nick's death in December 2022.

The dad of two young children died in December 2017 at the age of 38, just 101 days after being diagnosed with MND.

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The foundation set up in his name has made huge achievements since being launched, including helping establish a permanent MND Care Coordinator for Calderdale and Huddersfield.

The charity has also provided memory and treasure boxes to support children and families who have been devastated by a diagnosis of MND. This idea will be carried forward by the MND Association after the foundation's investment.

Its fundraising has meant more research into MND, support for a new study into the link with strenuous physical exercise and the condition, and investment in equipment that is helping investigations into the disease.

And the foundation has encouraged more young people to take up and love rugby league, by investing in an annual Under 7s tournament which it hopes will continue for many years to come and supporting clubs to develop their junior sections.

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Stephen Naylor, Chair of the Nick Smith Foundation, said: "On December 20, 2017, our lives changed forever when Nick died.

"The end of this year will mark the five-year anniversary of his death, and we are proud of the legacy The Nick Smith Foundation has built for an amazing man.

"Nick will always be a huge part of our lives. No one will ever forget him. But, after much soul searching, we believe the time is approaching to begin the process of moving to the next stage of remembering him – more privately, in our hearts, forever.

"That is why we have decided that the five-year anniversary in December 2022 will be the right point to bring our formal charitable activities to a close and to begin the process of finishing our work, with the aim of the 2022/23 accounts and annual report, due April 30, 2023, being our last.

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"We want the next 12 months to be a celebration of what we have achieved, to raise as much as possible and to keep making a difference, confident that what we have done in the years since Nick died has built a legacy that will continue."

He thanked everyone who has supported the foundation so far and said there are more events and activities planned for 2022 that will ensure the charity can do more to make a real difference before closing.

"In one year from now, the foundation will be drawing its work to a close," he added. "But between now and then, let’s celebrate an amazing man, remember him, and raise as much as we can to support his lasting legacy."