Crowdfunding campaign for Alesha MacPhail memorial raises over £22,000

Alesha MacPhail, 6, died on the Isle of Bute in July.
Alesha MacPhail, 6, died on the Isle of Bute in July.
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A crowdfunding page set up to raise funds for a memorial at the former primary school of tragic schoolgirl Alesha MacPhail has smashed its target -- by almost triple.

The page was set up less than a month ago but has exceeded the original target of £8,000 - with help from fans of comedian Jason Manford who shared the charity page.

As of this morning (Fri) the JustGiving page has raised more than £22,000 from 3970 generous contributors.

The money raised from the fund, which was set up by, Nicola Smith, vice-chair of Chapelside Primary School, will go towards a permanent memorial at the school in Airdrie, North Lanarkshire.

It will be a tribute to six-year-old Alesha who died on the Isle of Bute in July.

READ MORE: Mourners to pay tribute to Alesha MacPhail at candlelit vigil

The tragic girl’s body was discovered after she was reported missing from her grandparents’ home, where she was only a few days into a three-week summer holiday break.

A 16-year-old boy has been charged with rape and murder and was remanded in custody are making no plea to the charges at Greenock Sheriff Court in July.

Discussions over what the memorial will be are ongoing, as initial proposals suggested a professionally handmade wooden play house.

But now a meeting area for pupils is being looked into as this was said to be “in keeping” with Alesha’s character.

Expressing her gratitude for the fund’s support, organiser Nicola said: “Absolutely gobsmacked.

“On behalf of Chapelside Primary School and Chapelside Parent Council we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

“I actually have no words right now, the tears are blinding me.

“Thank you so much. Alesha, wherever you are you’ll always be our Chapelside star.”

Wendy Davie, head teacher of Chapelside Primary School, said: “We’ve been completely overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from so many people, including complete strangers, with no connection to the school, for our memorial fundraising appeal for Alesha.

“The entire school community is working closely together to create a fitting and lasting memorial for Alesha and this is being led by our Parent Council who have been tireless in their efforts.

“At the moment we’re still discussing what the memorial will look like, but we’re thinking about some form of meeting area where pupils can sit and chat with each other.

“That would be very much in keeping with Alesha’s character - as she was so smiley and sociable and loved spending time chatting and laughing with her classmates.

“We’d like to thank everyone for the generous and kind support they’ve shown to our appeal.”