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Thursday 26 April 2018

'It's sickening,' says charity worker who gave £26k to Console

Singer Daniel O’Donnell and his wife Majella, pictured at the event
Singer Daniel O’Donnell and his wife Majella, pictured at the event

Greg Harkin

An Irish charity worker who raised thousands for Console says he feels "cheated" after handing over £26,650 to former CEO Paul Kelly.

Singer Daniel O'Donnell and his wife Majella, pictured at the event, were among a star-studded line-up at a London GAA club who helped raise more than €120,000 for Irish charities.

Brendan Vaughan (56), a carpenter originally from Carrigart in Co Donegal, was one of the organisers of the London Irish Vintage Club family day at the Tir Conaill Club.

The auction at the annual charity day is famous for the huge amounts of money it raises.

"We paid the money into a London bank account for the charity and I feel sick about it now," he told the Irish Independent.

"There is nothing we can do about it now but it is sickening when you think about all the hard work and all the generosity of the Irish community here in London and then to find out that the money has been used in such a shoddy way."

"I'd love to meet Paul Kelly face to face again and ask him how he could do this," Mr Vaughan added.

He said the money raised is always split between four charities each year.

The 2016 event takes place on Sunday week and donations to the auction this year include a Morris Minor and a Mark 5 Cortina.

Ex-pats from all over England attend the event.


The proceeds from the 2014 vintage day were given to the charities in April last year.

Paul Kelly flew to London to receive the cheque payable to Console's UK account.

"Whatever happens now it is important that the people who look after charities in Ireland regulate them better," Mr Vaughan said.

"I'm sure things will be better going forward but this experience has been a bad one for us."

Irish Independent

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