Soccer special earns thousands in memory of tragic Samantha

Picture by Allan McKenzie/YWNG - 300814 - Press - Samantha Sykes Fundraiser - Eastmoor FC - Eastmoor, Wakefield, England - Eric & Julie Sykes with all the players and officials.
Picture by Allan McKenzie/YWNG - 300814 - Press - Samantha Sykes Fundraiser - Eastmoor FC - Eastmoor, Wakefield, England - Eric & Julie Sykes with all the players and officials.

A community football event raised thousands of pounds for an organisation launched to help young people in need of protection.

The event at Eastmoor Rugby Club raised more than £4,000 for the Samantha Sykes Foundation Trust.

Samantha, 18, and Kimberley Frank, 17, were killed on March 9, 2012, in Eastmoor by Ahmad Otak, who was jailed for life.

The tragic events inspired the formation of The trust, which will help protect children against sexual exploitation and support young people in care who want go into further and higher education.

Samantha’s mum Julie Warren-Sykes said: “The event was fabulous. It was a really good turnout and we were humbled by the amount of support we got from the community.”

Cash raised at the fundraiser, which was held at the club’s Park Lodge Lane ground on August 30, will help the trust become a fully-registered charity.

Around 100 players took part in a rolling substitution system during the match, which saw teams of past and present players battle it out.

The sides drew 4-4 as more than 100 specially-made match shirts were sold at the game, which was followed by a raffle, food and live music in the clubhouse.

Prizes and a match trophy were provided thanks to sponsorship from businesses.

Mrs Warren Sykes added: “We’d like to say a particular thanks to Phil and Sheridan Dickerson, who organised the event. They did a fantastic job.”

The trust has also organised a Butterfly Ball on November 22 at the Cedar Court Hotel, on Denby Dale Road, Wakefield.

The ball will be compered by ITV’s Gaynor Barnes and will feature an auction and live music from Meatloaf tribute act Baz Out of Hell.

For more information log on to www.samanthasykesfoundation.com