Blues remember Arthur at annual matchday - The Solihull Observer

Blues remember Arthur at annual matchday

Solihull Editorial 16th Jan, 2024   0

BIRMINGHAM City footballers headed out onto the pitch in memory of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes for their annual fundraising match.

Ever since Arthur’s tragic death in 2020, The Blues have made it a tradition to host a memorial match close to Arthur’s birthday to celebrate his life, raise the issue of child protection and generate vital funds for NSPCC services based in the City.

Sir Peter Wanless, chief executive of the children’s charity, attended the match on Saturday (January 13), where players from Birmingham City Football Club were seen warming up in NSPCC shirts before drawing with rivals Swansea City 2 -2 in the Sky Bet Championship fixture.

He spoke at half time about the value of the partnership between the Club and the NSPCC and the positive difference it makes to many young lives. He also presented the Club with an “Esther award” recognising this innovative link up.

Sir Peter said: “We would like to thank everyone at Birmingham City, including all the fans, for being such incredible hosts and for putting on the special event to commemorate Arthur Labinjo-Hughes.

“Arthur’s death in 2020 shocked Solihull and Birmingham, and people all across the UK. These memorial events help the NSPCC raise the issue of child protection and to enforce the message that safeguarding is everyone’s duty and responsibility.

“These dedicated match days are also a means to unite the local community and to try and make a difference for the future.”

Both Tony Mowbray, the new manager for The Blues, and Captain Dion Sanderson paid tribute to Arthur in the game’s programme which also featured Arthur’s name on the front cover with the words ‘You are loved’.

Also on the day, special NSPCC teddy bears, sporting a Birmingham City 2023/24 kit, were made available to help raise money for the charity while a team of volunteers from the NSPCC were busy collecting donations.

Amanda Synnott, community fundraising manager for Birmingham, said: “The NSPCC is hugely grateful to the club for organising the Arthur match, for raising so much awareness of NSPCC and for everything they are doing to fundraise in aid of the NSPCC, including donating all the profits on the sales of teddy bears and a pre-match collection.

“Funds raised today will support the NSPCC’s work here in Birmingham and across the West Midlands to help keep children safer.”

Dion Sanderson and John Ruddy from BCFC, also visited the Childline base in Birmingham in order to shadow volunteers and to better understand the work that goes into supporting the helpline.

For more on how to support the NSPCC in Birmingham, click here.

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