Cambridge student raising £5,000 for helicopter to rush him to his sister's wedding

Louis McBride's exam finishes 45 minutes before a ceremony four hours away by car

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The Independent Online

A Cambridge student is raising money for a helicopter to take him to his sister's wedding, which starts just 45 minutes after the end of his last exam.

Louis McBride, a first-year physics student at King's College, is aiming to collect £5,000 in donations so that he can make it to the ceremony in Wiltshire - four hours away by car - in time.

He explained the importance of making it to the wedding. "We’re a very close-knit family," he said. "Our granddad passed earlier this year, which really felt like it left a hole in our family. I’m immensely close to my sister and just really want to be able to see her when she ties the knot.

"I had to miss the family gathering the night before my other sister’s wedding last year due to an A-level exam.

"I’ve been looking forward to supporting my sister at her wedding for almost two years now, and desperately want to be there for her."

With the help of his friends, Mr McBride has produced a light-hearted YouTube video to advertise the campaign and is relying on social media to help spread the word.

He said: "I was joking about hiring a helicopter to get me to the wedding, and then a few hours later a few of my friends called me into the bar and revealed that they’d set up a Facebook page, a Twitter account and were planning on shooting a fundraising video to try and raise the funds.

"I was incredibly touched that they’d think to do this for me - I was pretty much speechless when they told me - and so it’s really thanks to their idea that it’s got this far!"

He has also received help from staff at his college. After the university refused to let him miss the exam, one of his tutors argued on his behalf and won permission for him to sit it early - so that he would finish just as the rest of the class entered.

The campaign has raised a total of £2,210 at the time of writing. Mr McBride said he was "shocked, really. Incredulous that there are so many lovely people out there who’d want to help the cause, grateful of course for everything that’s been donated so far, and hopeful - both for mine and my family’s sake - that we manage to raise the full amount!"

If he is left with more money than he needs, or if he doesn't raise enough, Mr McBride says he will donate it to the East Anglia Air Ambulance service.

The Go Fund Me page for the campaign can be found here.

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