This Sunday, 27th June, sees celebrities and former footballing icons join together in an attempt to raise money for the Treetops Hospice. The event is being held in honour of Samantha Birtles, wife of former Nottingham Forest centre-forward Gary Birtles, who sadly has terminal pancreatic cancer.
The Samantha Birtles Trophy is set to take place at Basford United, and whilst in-person tickets are sold out, you can watch the game virtually by purchasing a ticket from Basford United FC. Tickets can be purchased for £15, with all proceeds going towards the Treetops Hospice, who are currently providing care for Samantha.
All with ties to Nottingham, the Superstars include the likes of ex-Forest keeper Mark Crossley, centre-back Des Walker and forward Tony Woodcock
Kicking off at 3pm, the game sees Gary Birtles’ Superstars take on Kevin Keegan’s Treetops Legends. Former Nottingham Forest legends Martin O’Neill and Nigel Clough are set to take the reins for the Superstars. All with ties to Nottingham, the Superstars include the likes of ex-Forest keeper Mark Crossley, centre-back Des Walker and forward Tony Woodcock.
Their opposition, whilst all in their early-40s, present the more youthful outfit. Ex-Aston Villa duo Stiliyan Petrov and Lee Hendrie join former Premier League defenders Paul Konchesky and Anton Ferdinand. The side is managed by former England boss Kevin Keegan with ex-England, West Ham and Bolton striker Kevin Nolan as his assistant.
In addition to the game of Football, people can get involved by bidding on an extensive amount of rare sporting memorabilia and experiences that are available for auction. Items such as a signed Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid shirt and a signed photograph of the late Diego Maradona are likely to attract the highest bids.
All money collected from the event and the auction will help the Treetops Hospice provide vital care in the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire regions.
As stated by Birtles, ‘Treetops need approximately £8,000 per day per carer and are looking to raise over £4 million to have a facility where people can be looked after overnight’.
Alongside this event, Tony Woodcock is launching a new fundraising initiative for Treetops called – ‘Nottingham’s Very Own’. Personalised keepsake plaques can be purchased with funds once again supporting the hospice.
Birtles has said: ‘there are so many people to thank […] when you see how well they look after you at Treetops and the care and attention that goes into their work it makes you want to raise as much money as possible’
Over £20,000 has already been raised but those involved will hope this figure will significantly increase this weekend.
Leading up to this weekend’s event, Birtles has said: ‘there are so many people to thank… hopefully none of us will need these facilities later in life, but when you see how well they look after you at Treetops and the care and attention that goes into their work it makes you want to raise as much money as possible’.
To donate to the Treetops Hospice and this weekend’s Samantha Birtles Trophy:
The auction will remain open until noon on Wednesday 30th July and can be found here.
Donations, starting at £15, will allow virtual access to Sunday’s event and includes a physical souvenir programme. Tickets can be found here.
Visit ‘Nottingham’s Very Own’, to purchase bespoke plaques in support of Treetops Hospice.
Featured image used courtesy of Arran Bee via Flickr. No changes were made to this image. Image use license here.
In article image courtesy of @officialnffc via Instagram. No changes were made to this image.
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