THE Newcastle Falcons yesterday put their weight behind a campaign to raise money in honour of inspirational Josie Grove.
Four of the rugby union team’s stars headed to Whickham School and Sports College yesterday to take part in a charity tug-of-war as part of a week of activities aimed at raising money for the 16-year-old’s cancer charity.
Courageous Josie died in February following a two-year battle with cancer, but her bravery and determination has inspired hundreds to fundraise in her name and more than £100,000 has been collected.
Now more than 350 youngsters at the Gateshead school are adding to that total as they hold their ninth annual charity week with the Josie Groves Leukaemia Fund chosen as the beneficiary. Pupils and staff have organised a week of events, including fashion shows, a battle of the bands, and teacher sumo-wrestling.
But yesterday was the highlight of the week as Rob Vickers, Tim Visser, Rupert Harden and Ross Batty took to the playing field to take on a series of teams involving staff and pupils in a show of strength.
Although head of year 12 Linda Cooper confessed the teams weren’t always quite equal. She said: “I think on occasion there was about 20 people against the Falcons. It was great fun and the kids were very excited. I think the players enjoyed it too, as they promised to come back again next year.”
The school has already raised £5,000 for the fund, but it hoped this will have doubled by the weekend.