It is great to see that Angling is being used by the Professional Footballers Association (PFA) as a method of raising money for worthwhile causes.
The PFA in conjunction with ‘Sporting Chance’, the Tony Adams sponsored rehabilitation Clinic recently used the superb facilities of Marton Heath Trout Pools in Cheshire to raise money for the Tamsin Gulvin Benevolent Fund, (TGBT). Tamsin had unfortunately passed away in 2004 due to excessive drink & drug problems and Peter Kay, head of Sporting Chance had this to say, ‘many people are under the misconception that Sporting Chance only opens its doors to high profile footballers and sporting celebrities who have developed a variety of addictions. This could not be further from the truth. We are available for any person with a sporting background, amateur or professional who are experiencing problems in life pertaining to addiction. Tamsin was a young lady, taken from this world before help could reach her. We would like to make sure that this does not happen to others in similar situations’.
Trevor Sinclair of Man City with Andy Taylor of Sporting Chance at Marston Trout pools.
Peter was questioned regarding his use of Angling as a way of raising money and awareness of ‘Sporting Chance’, and he gave this answer, ‘ Firstly angling happens to be a particular passion of mine, as well as many members of the PFA and footballing world. I also believe angling is tremendously beneficial from a health perspective. It is therapeutic, peaceful and supposedly non competitive, however a few of the players I know who fish dispel that theory!
Often when instigating change in a persons life we need to find pastimes and activities to fill the void that maybe alcohol, gambling or drugs filled previously. Angling is ideal’.
Participating in the Fund Raising day were some high profile names such as, Trevor Sinclair, Dave Watson, Claudio Reyna, John Bramall and Joey Barton. Joey, who is the patron of the TGBT, and unbeknown to many spends an enormous amount of time, energy and effort raising money for charities.
An afternoon of Fly Fishing, for some who were past masters at it and some who were trying for the first time, left everyone completely hooked and raring to go for another time. Andy Taylor from Marton Heath, who delivered the day for Sporting Chance, had this to say, ‘It has been great to be involved in such an event. Everyone has enjoyed the day and it is great to see top professionals getting enthused and trying their hand at another sport. Trevor Sinclair has been so taken with it that he has booked another lesson for next week’.
One organisation that was invited to take part was ‘National Fishing Week’ (NFW). Neil Sellers the project manager of NFW, had this to say, ‘It has been brilliant to build up such a close working relationship with the PFA and Sporting Chance over the last few years. These high profile celebrities have a tremendous passion for sport and participation. They have assisted in NFW events, which have allowed us to access the non-angling media and will continue to do so. To see them here at Marton Heath today, using Angling as a means of raising money is testimony to their commitment to our sport’.
The final words came from Peter Kay, ‘Marton Heath has proved a superb venue and we will be back next year. Through the generosity of our sponsors we have raised a significant amount of money for the Trust. Finally we would like to replicate this type of event around the country and will be increasing the dialogue with NFW to see how this can be achieved through even greater involvement of the Angling industry. There might be a tackle supplier out there who would start by supplying us with a couple of rods and reels? Who knows’!