Thursday 19th July 2012
Premier League new boys Reading raised more than £17,000 for a hospice during last season's title-winning campaign.
The newly-promoted club raised £17,555 for the Duchess of Kent House Charity, as part of The Football League's official charity partnership with Help The Hospices.
The money was raised through fundraising activities including an auction of players' shirts, a bucket collection, a charity race night and teams entered into the Reading Half Marathon. The club's promotion celebration at the Madejski stadium fetched more than £8,000 alone.
George Solly, director of fundraising at the Duchess of Kent House Charity, said: "We have been delighted to work alongside Reading Football Club and its chairman Sir John Madejski this season.
"With their support, we have been able to continue helping seriously ill people in our community to live well until they die."
Football fans across England and Wales voted for Help the Hospices to be The Football League's official charity partner for the 2011/12 season.
The season has seen fans, players, managers and even mascots from The Football League's 72 clubs all pitching in to help people with life-limiting and terminal illnesses and their families to live well.
Chief executive of Help The Hospices, David Praill, said: "Football fans and hospice supporters alike are deeply passionate and loyal towards their local communities, so there has been a tremendous amount of goodwill behind our partnership with The Football League and this has allowed us to tell millions of people about hospice care."
Greg Clarke, chairman of The Football League, said: "Our partnership with Help The Hospices has touched the hearts of many of our fans this season and allowed us to make a real difference at a local level.
"Football League crowds topped 16 million last season; statistically, half of those attending games will know someone who has been cared for by a hospice."