Sporting legends makes virtual appearance for Acorns

Gabby Agbonlahor and Ian Bell amongst host of stars raising funds for childrens hospice.

The phenomenal fundraising efforts of three home heroes has clocked up an impressive £12,100 for Acorns Children’s Hospice with a series of 12-hour challenges that featured some well-known faces from the world of sport.

Undeterred by coronavirus lockdown measures, Duncan Mathieson, James Wright and Luke Corbet dedicated an entire day last Sunday to raising vital funds for the charity in their own homes.

Cheering Duncan on via Instagram Live as he cycled non-stop for twelve hours was a series of virtual special guests, including former Aston Villa striker Gabby Agbonlahor and England cricket legends Graham Gooch and Ian Bell.

Professional golfer James put the fun in fundraising by sporting a dinosaur costume and suit and tie as he completed a mammoth 100 miles on the treadmill, while Acorns Ambassador Luke joined Duncan in a 12-hour cycle.

Duncan Mathieson, Managing Director of Realis Estates and a Vice President for Acorns, whose feat alone raised a staggering £11,010, said: “It’s a tough time for everyone at the moment but it really is a difficult time for charities and hospices, like Acorns. So, I am delighted to be able to play my part.

“The cycle was very challenging at points, but I was spurred on thinking of the families who are caring for children 24-7 during these difficult times with no rest and the hospice staff who are working extremely hard to support them.”

Also making an appearance on Duncan’s Instagram feed was Acorns Ambassador and Pride of Britain winner Moin Younis, professional boxer Richard Riakporhe and GB athletes Guy Learmonth and Jazmin Sawyers.

Sunday’s fundraisers follow a 12-hour guitar marathon by dedicated dad Tony Frobisher who sang and played non-stop for his challenge. Tony, whose daughter Milla received care at Acorns hospice in Worcester, raised another fantastic £1,180.

Vicki Rowles, Head of Fundraising at Acorns, said: “What an incredible team effort! It was wonderful seeing social media come alive as supporters followed their progress, not only cheering them on but also joining the conversation with Duncan and his special guests.

“Together they have raised a fantastic amount. From everyone at Acorns, a huge thank you to all of our 12-hour challengers.”

As fundraising events up and down the country have been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Acorns has launched a series of fun new ways to support the charity from the safety of your own home.

Acorns virtual events enable you to complete your own personal challenges in your own homes, gardens and streets and record your progress online. From walks, cycles and runs to gaming and children’s challenges, there really is something for everyone.

Vicki added: “We need the public as much as ever, to continue to support Acorns as we stand together with our local communities during time of unprecedented national crisis.”

For more details on how you can support Acorns in the fight against coronavirus, visit