News

Christmas comes early for ‘hero’ Stuart

Stuart celebrating Christmas Day
Stuart celebrated Christmas in mid-November

Stuart Hasler is a dedicated charity fundraiser and volunteer, writes James Cracknell

Carers for a disabled Enfield man receiving end-of-life care have helped him celebrate both Christmas Day and New Year’s Day a month early.

Stuart Hasler has been partying with friends and family and even received a personal video message from star striker Alexandre Lacazette, who plays for his beloved Arsenal FC.

Stuart has a learning disability and a rare condition called Sotos syndrome, which causes excessive growth spurts in childhood plus other physical and mental impairments. The 42-year-old has not let his disability hold him back, however, and is a prolific fundraiser and volunteer for various charities – being described as a “hero” for his dedication to good causes.

One of Stuart’s carers, Priscilla Surfraz, told the Dispatch: “Everyone is trying to keep his spirits up. He had Christmas Day, with carols singers and a proper Christmas dinner, plus mince pies. Then he had Boxing Day and New Year’s Eve with visitors and a party.

“There is a whole team – the council, care staff, North Middlesex Hospital – and so many people involved in his care that have worked so hard since the lockdown [in March] when he began to deteriorate.

“He has been in and out of hospital – his cat, Mittens, has kept him going all this time.”

Stuart with his cat Mittens
Stuart with his cat Mittens

A lifelong borough resident, Stuart currently lives in Linwood Crescent and is a familiar face around Enfield Town, where he is often seen riding his mobility scooter. His charity work over the years has included fundraising for charities Make A Wish, Age UK and Help for Heroes. He has also met many celebrities and important people, including The Queen, Princess Diana, and Gordon Brown when he was prime minister. And as a performer with Chickenshed Theatre, Stuart even once appeared on stage at the Royal Albert Hall.


This story is published by Enfield Dispatch, Enfield's free monthly newspaper and free news website. We are a not-for-profit publication, published by a small social enterprise. We have no rich backers and rely on the support of our readers. Donate or become a supporter.


Priscilla added: “He has done so much work for charities over the years, he has got such a big heart and always thinks of other people.”

A GoFundMe page has been launched to help pay for Stuart’s arrangements and expenses following his end-of-life care, and has already raised more than its £10,000 target. Additional funds will be put towards a memorial bench for Stuart to be placed outside Enfield Civic Centre. Click here to donate.

Update: We are sad to report that Stuart passed away on Friday 4th December. Patricia said: “He had a peaceful passing and had his last day filled with joy.”

Stuart Hasler fundraising for homeless charity Todos in Enfield Town
Stuart fundraising for homeless charity Todos in Enfield Town

No news is bad news 

Independent news outlets like ours – reporting for the community without rich backers – are under threat of closure, turning British towns into news deserts. 

The audiences they serve know less, understand less, and can do less. 

In celebration of Indie News Week, Public Interest News Foundation's Indie News Fund will match fund all donations, including new annual supporter subscriptions for the month of June.

If our coverage has helped you understand our community a little bit better, please consider supporting us with a monthly, yearly or one-off donation. 

Choose the news. Don’t lose the news.

Monthly direct debit 

Annual direct debit

£5 per month supporters get a digital copy of each month’s paper before anyone else, £10 per month supporters get a digital copy of each month’s paper before anyone else and a print copy posted to them each month. £50 annual supporters get a digital copy of each month's paper before anyone else.  

Donate now with Pay Pal

More information on supporting us monthly or yearly 

More Information about donations