Gorleston couponing mum beats national record

Holly Smith, 30, was diagnosed with rare bone tumours in 2009, and found herself at a loose end whil

Holly Smith, 30, was diagnosed with rare bone tumours in 2009, and found herself at a loose end while waiting for an operation. So, to pass the time, she started a money-saving and coupon-ing blog, to help families like hers save money. - Credit: Supplied

A Gorleston woman who describes herself as 'a mum on a mission' has put her unique skills to the test and beat a national coupon record for charity.

Holly Smith, 30, was diagnosed with rare bone tumours in 2009, and found herself at a loose end whil

Holly Smith, 30, was diagnosed with rare bone tumours in 2009, and found herself at a loose end while waiting for an operation. So, to pass the time, she started a money-saving and couponing blog, to help families like hers save money. - Credit: Supplied

Holly Smith, 30, was diagnosed with rare bone tumours in 2009, and found herself at a loose end while waiting for an operation. So, to pass the time, the mum-of-two started a money-saving and couponing blog, to help families like hers save money.

'When I was on the waiting list I was sitting with nothing to do and I didn't want to just sit there on Facebook so I started entering competions,' she said.

'Then people started saying every time they saw me I had lots of coupons, so I thought I would make my own blog, there was nothing like it already.'

Now that Holly's website - Extreme Couponing UK - is keeping her busy, with 259,000 Facebook likes and a reach of 2.7m, she also wanted to give something back.

So on Wednesday she set herself the challenege of breaking the national record for the most valuable shop, paid for using purely coupons, in aid of the Benjamin Foundation.

The charity helps families and individuals across the county to deal with many of life's challenges ranging from homelessness to finding affordable childcare.

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To beat the current record, Holly had to achieve at least £1000 worth of shopping bought at no cost with the coupons she has saved.

In the end her

£1,164.39 haul, which took five and a half hours to collect and process, did set the new bar.

After the shop, she donated all the groceries purchased at Tesco in Lowestoft to the charity, bringing her total donation amount to £2,500 as she was also supported by companies and organisations.

Holly said: 'I'm very excited to have supported such a worthwhile cause.

'At Christmas time financial problems can seem even worse. My goal was using my coupon and money saving skills to get as many free items, in order to help those that are most in need at this time of year.

'Hopefully this will make their Christmas a happier one.'

Holly, of Emmanuel Avenue, also suffers with Asperger's Syndrome and wants to show from her own experience, that if a person has a positive attitude, they will overcome most adversities.