Hero plumber who refused to charge woman, 91, receives £80,000 in donations
A kind-hearted plumber who fixes boilers free of charge for the elderly and disabled, is now hoping to extend his services across the country after receiving £80,000 in donations.
James Anderson, 52, from Burnley, risked going bankrupt, by closing his private business and re-launching it as a not-for-profit company, Depher, so he could help people.
He raises money using crowdfunding and donations to help people across Lancashire.
His work and generosity went viral after a picture of his bill for £0 sent to a 91-year-old woman with acute leukaemia was posted online.
Mr Anderson says he has been blown away from all the support he has since received from all over the world, including money to pay off his debt as well as offers of holidays and thousands of emails full of praise.
He said: People are talking about doing it in America, France and Australia, and theyre all going to contact me to get advice and guidance as to how to do it in their countries.
Hopefully… we can bring all communities together for one common cause across the planet, so everybody whos elderly and disabled, not just in the UK, can benefit from something like this in society.
Mr Anderson confirmed that he had received £79,767 in donations since Monday, saying that before the fame Id have been lucky if I could pay my overdraft.
He wishes to use the donations to extend help to more vulnerable people across the country.
He said: I had to lay two of the lads off because I couldnt afford it, then I had to go out and do the jobs myself as well as the paperwork, advertising, quotes and everything else.
Now I can look at bringing them back.
We dont just have to do Lancashire now. Im going to be ringing local engineers in the wider area.
Weve had companies say theyll do all the advertising for us including a website, all free of charge. This is just the beginning of something that can be global.
The increased visibility of Mr Andersons work has led to people getting in touch to find out how they can help too.
A woman who was inspired by his work, knocked on her neighbours door to find she had been without hot water for two years.