Soap stars and former professional footballers are expected to land in the area on a massive fundraising mission. Emmerdale and Hollyoaks stars, former footballers and even darts champion Joe Cullen are to play a celebrity football match to help charity group Miles for Smiles break their £50,000 fundraising total from the ‘last year.
Celebrity football will take place with a match at the Ashby Ivanhoe FC ground, Lower Packington Road, Ashby on Sunday 12 June. Entry is £5 and kick off is at 1pm.
Before that, on Sunday April 10, the Miles for Smiles fundraising effort will be bolstered by another charity match in memory of Gresley FC footballer Jack Gallagher, who died suddenly in October 2021. Professional boxer Burton Frazer Clarke is expected to Catch the match at Gresley’s Moat Ground, which kicks off at noon, with admission costing £5 for adults and £1 for children.
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Another fundraising night on Saturday May 7 will see former Premier League goalkeeper Paddy Kenny, along with a comedian, make an appearance at Jennings Rooms, Woodville. Tickets cost £25 each.
Finally, on Saturday November 19, the band will host a musical evening featuring the talents of Foofighters tribute band Foofighters GB and Burton band 3LessThan5. It will take place at the Ritz, in Guild Street, Burton, at 7 p.m. Tickets cost £10.
Miles for Smiles, made up of several fundraisers based in Swadlincote and Burton, has spent the past seven years traveling the UK far and wide to raise thousands of pounds for charity. This year, the group is again raising funds for Ticknall-based Me & Dee, which provides families facing a life-changing, life-shortening or terminal condition with special holidays.
As part of their fundraising efforts, members will also travel 440 miles across the UK stopping at a long list of football stadiums. But they remain tight-lipped about the Hollyoaks, Emmerdale and former football stars attending Ashby’s game in June.
One of the members, Callum Worker, said: “We are in our seventh year of fundraising. We normally try to do a different charity every year. Last year we did Me & Dee and because we have seen what a great charity it is and all it does, we will be fundraising for it again.
“What they are doing is amazing. A friend of mine knows a woman who is 34 and has only four months to live. She contacted Me&Dee founder Maria Hanson and they will be going to a lodge right after a phone call.”
Starting August 12 from Liverpool’s Anfield stadium, the group will travel to 34 different stadiums, including those of Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Birmingham City – as well as Wembley – before reaching Gresley FC on August 27. August and complete the march. at The Greyhound pub in Woodville.
Mr Worker added: “We’re making it bigger and harder – and we all love football. Last year we raised £51,000 and our target was £20,000.”
Tickets for all Miles for Smiles events are available by visiting his Facebook group. Donations can be made by visiting https://justgiving.com/fundraising/milesforsmiles2022
These are the stadiums that Miles for Smiles will visit
Anfield (Liverpool) – August 12
Goodison Park (Everton) – August 12
Peninsula Stadium (City of Salford) – August 12
Old Trafford (Manchester United) – August 13
The Etihad Stadium (Manchester City) – August 13
Edgeley Park (Stockport County) – August 13
Moss Rose (Town of Macclesfield) – August 13
Vale Park (Port Vale) – August 14
The Bet365 Stadium (Stoke City) – August 14
The Bescot Stadium (Walsall) – August 15
Molineux (Wolverhampton Wanderers) – August 15
The Hawthorns (West Bromwich Albion) – August 16
Villa Park (Aston Villa) – August 16
St Andrews (City of Birmingham) – August 16
Coventry Building Society Arena (Coventry City) – August 17
MK Stadium (Milton Keynes Dons) – August 18
The Tottenham Hotspur Stadium (Tottenham Hotspur) – August 19
Emirates Stadium (Arsenal) – August 19
The London Stadium (West Ham Utd) – August 20
The Valley (Charlton Athletic) – August 20
The Lair (Millwall) – August 20
Selhurst Park (Crystal Palace) – August 20
Craven Cottage (Fulham) – August 21
Stamford Bridge (Chelsea) – August 21
Brentford Community Stadium (Brentford) – August 21
Loftus Road (Queens Park Rangers) – August 21
Wembley (England) – August 21
Vicarage Road (Watford) – August 22
Kenilworth Road (Town of Luton) – August 22
Sixfields Stadium (Northampton Town) – August 24
King Power Stadium (Leicester City) – August 25
Owen Street Sports Field (Town of Coalville) – August 26
Moat Ground (Gresley Rovers) – August 27
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