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Hampton Football Club raises money for stillbirth charity

Hampton FC in Peterborough has teamed up with SANDS (Stillbirth and Neonatal Death) charity, to raise money by completing the 2.6 challenge.
Hampton FC
Hampton FC are doing a cycle relay to raise money for SANDS (photo: Hampton FC)

Amy Eagling, 38, is the treasurer for Peterborough and Stamford Sands group and has teamed up with the football team her son, Zac, 11, plays for. 

The group plays home matches at Beaumont Way in Hampton Hargate, but the boys in the team live all over the city, so their challenge included a relay. 

Amy said: "Due to my involvement with Sands I became aware of the 2.6 challenge and mentioned it to the other parents a couple of weeks ago via our WhatsApp group wondering if there was something we could do as a team to help Sands.

"I knew we’d be fairly limited on what we could do but we wanted whatever we chose to be a team event. The idea of the cycle relay was then suggested.

"Whilst the team is Hampton based the players live in various locations spreading from Hemington to Coates so Mark Ansell-Crook, who manages the football team, produced a route that would allow for ten legs of a ride between the two furthest points in small three to four miles sections.

"Ideally they would have been 2.6 miles each but logistics meant they were slightly longer, this would allow everyone who could join in to do so with their families as part of their daily exercise whilst also maintaining social distancing."

She added: "The baton was a football that was passed from team to team along the route. We promoted the event on social media in the run up and have so far managed to raise just over £1300. The support has been incredible.

"It was lovely to take part and do something productive and fun. Whilst we weren’t actually with the rest of the team, as we all did our own legs of the journey, we followed everyone’s progress over the day on WhatsApp and shared pictures and videos.

"It was a real team effort and everyone did brilliantly. The youngest participant was my daughter, six-year-old Bella, who was determined to take part. She cycled six miles in total, the furthest she’s ever biked. She was very tired when we got home but did brilliantly. 

"Mark approached me last season saying he'd like Sands to be the team charity this year. From that point the boys had the Sands logo put onto their shirts and we have fundraised on a small scale over the season."

She continued: "Sands is the stillbirth and neonatal death charity who offer valuable support to anyone affected by the loss of a baby.

"They also promote research to help reduce stillbirth and neonatal death rates in the UK and help improve bereavement care. I first heard of Sands in 2012 when our son Charlie was stillborn and became involved as a volunteer locally a few years later."

Amy and her son's involvement in the fundraising was supported by Hampton FC coach Mark. He said: "Hampton Robins are proud to support SANDS.The lads' match shirts now include the charity logo."

It comes after their football season was voided, so they have been unable to play for the Cup Final after having an "amazing" 2019/20 season, left unbeaten in all matches.