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Westfield Primary School do their bit
Westfield Primary School do their bit

On Friday 8th February, in response to a request from Year 6 student Hayley Benton, Westfield Primary School in Acomb held a fun day in aid of the York City Supporters Trust.

Officially dubbed a "Pay 1 to wear a York City kit, or wear another football kit, or wear something red" day (phew!), a number of events took place in the morning and over lunchtime, to raise awareness of York City, the possible extinction of the club, and the work of the Trust.

No day like this is ever complete without some high-profile visitors, and Westfield were truly spoiled! Having been promised that the Supporters' Trust would try to line up a player to talk to the children, we were delighted to welcome 4 of them; Neville Stamp, Darren Edmonson, Gary Hobson and Lee Nogan, all of whom took time to explain to the children was is involved in professional football, and what it would mean to lose a club like York City.

The players finally exited carrying the front end of the "Supporters United" scarf, which had been brought in especially to mark the occasion. Much to the amusement of the children, the other end of the scarf still hadn't emerged by the time they had disappeared down a very long corridor, and into the car park!

Even the players though were upstaged in typical fashion by our very own Yorkie the Lion, who greeted young friends both old and new. Having been introduced at 2 assemblies to the whole school, and the small matter of lunch in between, Yorkie took to the field to support the children taking part in a specially staged "Save City" football match on the playing fields.

Yorkie found himself in much demand for autographs, handshakes, pats on the head and cuddles, and it was a pleasure to see many children supporting clubs like Leeds and Manchester United, still keen to join in and talk to Yorkie.

I wonder how many of them will want to come to the next game at Bootham Crescent to see him again? - food for thought.

Chatting to Yorkie afterwards, he seemed genuinely moved by the overwhelming reaction of everyone at Westfield School, pointing out that these are the next generation of supporters - we need to show them that watching football can be about so much more than turning on the TV to watch Manchester United v Chelsea on Sky.

The day was organised and presented by Martin Scott of the Supporters Trust, who put a great deal of preparation into making sure that everything went smoothly.

Thanks are also due to the Westfield School Head Teacher Mr Mark Barnett, for allowing us the opportunity to take part in such a fantastic day, and taking such an active role himself (a brilliant character, let me tell you!).

Most of all though, it's a very warm tribute and thanks to the staff, parents and pupils at the school, who raised a fantastic 525 for the Supporters Trust, which was presented to Martin before we left. Well done everyone!

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