Ella (6) in tribute to her gran

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A six-year-old girl staged her own special fund raising and has helped push the Thorpe Hall hospice appeal towards £3.5 million.

No sooner had Ella French learned to do rolly polies that she wanted to do loads of them - and all for money for Sue Ryder’s £6 million Thorpe Hall appeal.

Ella and Debbie

Ella and Debbie

Ella raised a stunning £146 for the appeal in memory of her grandmother, Debbie Gapper, who died from kidney cancer in August.

She persuaded her family, from Coates, friends and a schoolteacher to donate for each roly poly that she did before going to Thorpe Hall, in Thorpe Road, to hand over the money to staff.

Ella watched TV and drank hot chocolate with Debbie when she spent 10 days at the hospice. Ella’s mum, and Debbie’s daughter, Kelly, said: “Everyone is coping in their own little way. It’s what my mum would want. I’m proud of Ella.”

A Thorpe Hall spokeswoman said: “The last month - including Ella’s donation - has been very busy and we’ve now hit £3.3 million and we’re hoping by the end of December we’ll have hit £3.5 million.”