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High Sheriff of North Yorkshire spends night in the cells for Headway Main Image

High Sheriff of North Yorkshire spends night in the cells for Headway

Thu 29 Mar 2018

On Tuesday 6th March, staff and inmates at HMP Kerklevington witnessed a very unusual sight – the High Sheriff of North Yorkshire arriving in handcuffs.

Simon Wrightson’s usual duties were suspended as he spent a night in cells to raise money for Headway and the ABF Soldiers' charity.

Simon was checked into HMP Kerklevington, a category D prison, where he dined with several other inmates, who shared their stories of how they came to be in the prison and what they hoped to achieve upon their release.

He said: "It really was an amazing experience. Listening to the prisoners' stories was really eye-opening."

While Simon was doing his time, his family, friends, and members of the community were frantically donating to his Virgin Money Giving page in an attempt to raise enough money to bail him out.

Simon sits in his cell

To date, Simon’s supporters have donated over £10,000 in ‘bail money’ and the total continues to rise with the final figure expected to be in excess of £15,000. More than enough was raised to see the High Sheriff of North Yorkshire walk free and provide a very generous donation to his chosen charities.

As a brain injury survivor himself, Headway is a charity that is very close to Simon's heart.

"25 years ago, I slipped on some ice in a car park at the bottom of Mont Blanc. My injuries left me on a life support machine and in a coma for several weeks.”

Simon has supported Headway for many years; in 2002, he took part in the Great North Run and raised £26,000. At the time, it was the largest single donation Headway had ever received. In 2012, he opened his gardens to public and raised a further £6,205.

Jo Plant, Director of Fundraising for Headway - the brain injury association, said: "We're extremely grateful for Simon's continued support.

"Brain injury can have a devastating effect on people's lives, but Headway is there support people through the most difficult of times.

"The money Simon has raised will help to support our vital nurse-led helpline and our acute trauma support nurses based in hospitals across the country."

If you are taking on a challenge or organising fundraising event in support of Headway - the brain injury association we’d love to hear from you! Get in touch on or 0115 924 0800.


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Headway - the brain injury association is registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales (Charity no. 1025852) and the Office of the Scottish Regulator (Charity no. SC 039992). Headway is a company limited by guarantee, registered in England no. 2346893.

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