THANK you to everyone who donated to help young people in Hereford through the Hereford Times Christmas Appeal 2023. We chose to give our support to Close House this year.

With money still coming in and being counted, the appeal has raised an anticipated £1,500 to support Close House’s work, as staff there encourage young people to mature and develop the skills needed to lead full lives.

Close House manager Ben Lea said: “The young people are super-grateful for the support from the Hereford community.

“It’s so easy for teenagers to feel sidelined, but this shows that people are keen to invest in the wellbeing of young people, and for the future generations of Hereford to be adventurous.

“We will use the money to support our young people in their adolescence, giving them the roots they need before they stretch their wings.”

The charity aims to break cycles of negative experiences and behaviour that some young people face, instead enabling them to find more control over the direction their lives take. It aims to bring hope and aspiration to those who are vulnerable, disadvantaged or socially excluded.

Many of the people it works with experience homelessness, childhood abuse, mental illness, or substance misuse, and some have minor criminal records and police or court bail at the appointed time.

It supports these young people with safe, supportive, and inspiring projects and activities that encourage them to grow.


The Hereford Times Christmas Appeal was in partnership with the Herefordshire Community Foundation, which aims to build stronger communities in the county.

Hereford Times editor John Wilson said: “Thank you to all our readers who supported our Christmas appeal.

“Young people get a tough deal, these days, and I’m delighted that we have been able to make this contribution to help them make better lives for themselves.”