Predators put on a fun football feast for Francesca

A feast of football and fun made Predators FC's first charity day a roaring success.

Some of the teams who took part at the Predators fun day / Picture by Kate Shemilt
Some of the teams who took part at the Predators fun day / Picture by Kate Shemilt

Even the weather was kind with the forecast rain not appearing on a day all about the community raising money for the Chichester Down’s Syndrome support group.

The event had begun life as a mere a game of football to raise the profile of the group, who have been very supportive of Predators player Robbie Nelson and his family since his daughter Francesca Poppy was born with Down’s.

Over a very short period of time, people worked non-stop in the background and the fantastic generosity of local business and supporters helped turn the occasion into a memorable one.

First estimates are that the club raised more than £4,000 for the support group.

The football matches had two surprise guests – Rocks defender James Crane and coach Darin ‘Dabba’ Killpartrick.

They played in Paul Harris’ all-star XI but it was the old boys’ team, The Mavericks, who won the trophy, which was presented by Dabba. They beat The Young Ones 1-0 in the final. The Oldies were the fourth team involved.

A temporary tattoo stall run by young Grace Waller raised more than £250 alone and there were bouncy castles and an assault course, penalty shootouts and much more.

Organiser Harris said: “I have been involved in this football club since 1994 and I have to say this is one of my proudest days.

“Putting trophies and honours to one side, my dream is for this to be a real community club, one the whole community can be proud of.

“A lot of work working by people around the clock all week ensured everything was ready. A massive thank-you goes to all who contributed the raffle prizes and got involved. It was a great day for everybody.

“We have started plans for next year already and would love other business to be involved – please email me at [email protected] if you can help in any way.”

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