Blackpool Gazette Article 11th December 2020
As the Season of Goodwill is upon us, it is hugely gratifying to know that our football club and the organisations connected to it have been busy doing good, raising much needed funds and generally behaving like jolly good folk! It is worth reviewing what has happened recently.
In the 1st round of the FA Cup Blackpool were drawn away at Eastbourne Borough. Eastbourne were very excited about the draw and looked at it being the biggest game in their history. It was unfortunate that, due to the Covid pandemic, supporters were not able to attend the game and provide a useful payday for them; such games are a vital source of income for lower league clubs. The commercial manager at Eastbourne and BST exchanged emails before the fixture which resulted in a great outcome. Firstly a Just Giving page was set up to allow supporters to give Eastbourne something to help with the loss of ticket sales. This was well contributed to by Blackpool supporters and raised £2140. In return, Eastbourne kindly offered to display any BFC supporters flags at the game which was being televised by BT Sport. Time was short for flags to be organised from individual supporters so it was agreed that “Big Bertha” would go to Eastbourne, travelling with the BFC team and staff and to be displayed on matchday. A further act of kindness came from Blackpool FC when it became known that the club had decided not to claim expenses due to them from Eastbourne. What fantastic examples of goodwill and the wider football family doing the right things for the right reasons.
More recently, Blackpool FC Community Trust decided to set up a fundraiser to provide children who would otherwise not have anything, with Christmas presents this year. This was launched at the start of December with an ambitious target of £25,000 to be reached by the 14th December, this target was achieved on the 8th December and at the time of writing, the total has reached over £36,000. Supporters, local businesses and players & staff from BFC have contributed to help get to this fantastic amount in such a short time. Furthermore, Blackpool FC owner Simon Sadler has agreed to match all donations. Blackpool FC may have had a difficult time over recent years but we are certainly making up for lost time! After such a difficult year for so many people, how wonderful that our club, supporters and community have come together once again.
Meanwhile, in this year’s BST survey, our members made it clear that they want us to prioritise youth and grassroots football for our fundraising efforts. With this in mind, we decided to run football cards, which were well received and raised a total of £644 for local youth football. We would like to thank the Seasiders Podcast for making the draw for each card, live on their programme! The winners of the three draws were Pauline O’Rourke, Phil Corbett and Janet Burbridge, who each are now the proud owners of Blackpool FC shirts. There will be more to come in the New Year! With the money we have raised, we were able to supply local youth teams with vital equipment. 18 clubs have been given much needed footballs and carrying bags. It is our intention to continue with these efforts throughout the season as well as supporting our regular charities such as Homestart and The Boathouse Youth.
As ever, we could not do any of this without the generosity of our members and community. If you would like to be involved with any of our activities, please visit our website, www.blackpoolsupporterstrust.com where you can read up on what we are doing and , of course, become a member if you are not one already.
Blackpool Supporters’ Trust would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year – hopefully back inside Bloomfield Road