MARY Stevens Hospice bosses say their annual family fun day has broken all records - raising more than £14,000.

This year's event, held on Saturday September 2, kicked off with a parade through the streets of Oldswinford - led by former X-Factor contestant Wagner and the hospice's first-ever fun day Queen, Princes and Princesses plus a host of fairytale characters including Olaf, Elsa, Belle, Prince Charming and Snow White.

Just 15 minutes before the procession was due to take place, however, the planned route had to be changed as some of the streets were too congested with parked cars due to a sporting events at Greenfields in Swinford Road.

Hospice spokesman Dan Malin said: "We weren't able to do the full parade which inevitably meant some residents unfortunately missed it as we had no opportunity to advise them of the change of plan."

The last-minute change of plan, however, did not dampen spirits - according to Mr Malin and the parade still went ahead, departing from The Crabmill pub before winding up in the hospice grounds in Hagley Road.

He told the News: "It was a truly incredible spectacle, kicking off a wonderful day, and we still had lots of people joining in. However - we are deeply sorry to those who were expecting to see it and missed it."

He said more people than ever attended the fundraising fun day which featured entertainment from The Fizzogs, Funtime Theatre's Disney characters, Mommy's Mascots and More's Paw Patrol and Marvel characters.

The Mayor of Dudley, Councillor Dave Tyler, and Wagner officially opened the event which also included fairground rides, Army representatives, a craft competition, barbecue, soft play area, donkey rides, a mocktail bar, craft stalls, live music and the first-ever Mary Stevens Hospice Invitational Football Tournament.

That tournament, sponsored by M Webb Groundworks and Plant Hire, was refereed in part by hospice CEO Steve Jackson and former-WBA and Walsall footballer James Chambers, who also presented the medals and trophies.

Amanda Bowen, deputy head of fundraising and lottery at the hospice, said: “We're overwhelmed by the response we've had to the day, and we're so delighted that everything went as we'd hoped.

"We can't say how grateful we are to all the volunteers, organisations, stall-holders and everyone else who made the day possible.

"The money raised will make just the most enormous difference to the families here. Without our community - our work simply wouldn't be possible.”