The woman who helped raised hundreds of thousands of pounds for disabled OAP Alan Barnes has had the costly PR bill she was left with paid for by kind-hearted strangers.
Katie Cutler raised £330,000 for the 68-year-old after he was attacked near his home in Gateshead last year which left him scared of returning as he felt unsafe.
The fundraising initiative cost Cutler £6,687 to promote, but she was unable to pay the bill because she gave all of the money raised to Barnes and other good causes.
Claire Barber, who runs Claire Barber PR, took Cutler to the small claims court over the unpaid bill and the beautician was facing the prospect of bailiffs knocking on her door.
But now Cutler herself has benefited from money donated by strangers after many were moved by her plight.
Although this still left her several hundred pounds short Claire Barber, who runs Claire Barber PR, agreed that she would accept the figure to cover her debt.
The Mail quoted Barber as saying: “I am a very hard-working single mum running a business and I wish I could afford to write it off but I can’t.
“After a year-and-a-half of waiting, of course I would be more than happy to accept that figure, although I would point out that this has already gone to court and judgement has been made.”
He said he would offer “a small amount... £10 or something” to help towards the PR bill incurred by Cutler whilst promoting his cause.
The money allowed him to buy a new £150,000 two-bedroom terraced house.
Barnes defended his suggested donation, telling the Chronicle: “I would suggest that someone sets up a small fund to raise money to pay for Katie’s PR.
“It’s not a big amount and I think a lot of people would actually like to do that for Katie. I’m quite happy to put just a small donation in because I don’t want to show off.”
Barnes has said he will live off the money left over after the purchase of his house and donate any remaining funds to charity upon his death.
He added: “It’s easy for people to say ‘he’s got a lot of money, cough up’ but you got to look into all the alternatives.
“It might seem hard but if I start handing it out, other people might ask for money. It was given to me on the understanding that I use it for myself.
“A lot of people just want it to stay with me.”
The 4ft 6in visually-impaired man’s collar bone was broken in the attack by drug addict Richard Gatiss.
Gatiss was jailed for four years at Newcastle Crown Court. He was trying to get money to buy legal highs when he attacked Barnes who was putting his bins out.
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