A COMMUNITY continues to raise money in memory of Lance Corporal Ben Hyde, one of six Royal Military Policemen who died in June 2003, killed by a mob in a fire-fight at a police station in southern Iraq.

The Durham Ox pub in Northallerton, which was one of Ben’s favourite pubs, recently hosted a family fun day to raise money for the Lance Corporal Ben Hyde Memorial Trust, which was established in 2005 to support community organisations and services. It hands out about £10,000 a year.

The pub’s family fun day raised £1,500 and landlords Keith and Caroline Smith recently handed over the money to Ben’s father, John Hyde.

Mr Hyde said: “This is amazing. It is so fantastic that the pub organised this event. Loads of people turned up and enjoyed live music, children’s activities and refreshments. The Durham Ox was Ben’s pub of choice and it has always been very supportive of the foundation.”

The pub raised £1,500 on the day, and continues to raise money every week. “In just a matter of a couple of weeks the pub’s customers have raised about £170 through collection pots on the bar. They are fantastic supporters of the trust,” said Mr Hyde. The pub has raised about £2,000 so far this year.

Caroline said: “We just want to thank everyone who supported the event, without everyone we would not have raised this amount. It is such a good cause because all the money goes back into the community. They are a very special family, so we are happy to support the foundation."

L Cpl Hyde grew up in the market town, attending Mill Hill Primary School, the Allertonshire School and Northallerton College. After leaving college, L Cpl Hyde originally joined the Marines and later changed to become part of the military police based in Colchester, Essex.

His father and two friends, Noele and Irene Christon, also raised money for the foundation last month with a 184-mile walk along the Thames path. It took the trio, who carried George, the dummy soldier on a stretcher, 18 days from the head of the Thames near Kemble, in Gloucestershire, to the Thames Barrier. They also laid a wreath at the Iraq and Afghanistan Memorial.

En route, the walkers collected £2,574.91, and with sponsorship and donations the total raised is expected to be in the region of £4,500.