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7th Jul, 2022

The gloves were off during quirky hockey fund-raiser for Warwick charity

Editorial Correspondent 9th Sep, 2020 Updated: 9th Sep, 2020

THERE was more fun-draising than you could shake a stick at during a hockey tournament in aid of a Warwick charity.

The event held by Olton and West Warwickshire Hockey Club was organised to raise funds for Molly Olly Wishes – a charity supporting children with terminal illnesses and their families.

The annual fund-raiser – now a firm fixture of their ‘sporting’ calendar – involves five teams competed in a series of mixed ability matches with quirky handicaps and rule twists.

Over the years the tournament has raised more than £10,000 for the charity – founded in 2011 following the death of Rachel and Tim Ollerenshaw’s eight-year-old daughter Molly from a rare kidney cancer.

The club is pleased with the £1,680 proceeds from Saturday’s event, which have been achieved despite Covid precautions being put in place.

Organiser Adrian Stapley said: “For a long time it didn’t look like we would be able to even put on the tournament this year with the added pressure of our normal league fixtures starting soon. I would like to thank the small army of helpers I had in getting the day organised on such short notice.”

Adrian explained they were unable to deploy their usual game-changing handicaps, such as putting corner flags across the goal, due to covid measures. But others, which helped players to socially distance, were successfully used to compensate.

He added: “With the circumstances we faced and having to limit participants on the day we weren’t expecting to be as successful this year but the amount raised far exceeded many expectations so thank you to all who participated.”

As well as supporting children and families with their emotional wellbeing, the charity grants wishes and donates therapeutic toys and books to children directly and to hospitals across the UK.

Mascot of the charity is a therapeutic toy lion called Olly The Brave who has his own Hickman line – a tube to deliver fluids – and a detachable mane, to help explain and normalise the effects of chemotherapy. These form part of an Olly The Brave pack which includes a book from the charity’s exclusive Olly The Brave series.

Longstanding members of the hockey club include Molly’s dad Tim and brother Ben.

Trustee and founder Rachel Ollerenshaw said: “Olton and West Warks has huge significance for us a family and so it is always a very special day surrounded by a great group of people. The club has done so much to support the charity over the years and we are extremely grateful to all involved. The weather was kind and it was a really fun day that has helped to raise much-needed funds to ensure we can provide support to the children and families that need us.”

Visit www.mollyolly.co.uk for more information.

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