Cricket stars Graeme Swann, Monty Panesar and Allan Lamb are among the celebrities who have signed up for a charity match at the home of Earl Spencer in Northamptonshire.
The event, which takes place in June, is organised by the charity Runs4Funds set up by Northamptonshire all-rounder Steven Crook. The charity match will take place at the private cricket pitch at Althorp House.
A spokesman for Runs4Funds said it had helped to support a boy called Lewis in 2015, who has a condition called Lennox Gastaut Syndrome which is a rare form of epilepsy. The funds provided a much needed sensory garden for Lewis to enjoy.
“This year, ambitions are a lot bigger and Steven has joined forces with a local charity called Thomas’s Fund (www.thomassfund.org.uk) so that many more children like Lewis can be supported.
“The charity provides music therapy for terminally ill children. This therapy is often an important means of communicating for these children who may be severely disabled. Thomas’s Fund needs financial support to provide the equipment and therapists,” he added.
Runs4Funds aims to raise £25,000 this year through the game of cricket. Fans can pledge to donate any sum of money every time a Steelbacks player hits a six during a NatWest T20 Blast match this season – or for instant donations, Runs4Funds will be releasing a text-to-donate number ready for the first home game of the season. You can monitor their success and how your donations are doing through the ‘Whacker Tracker’ on the website, where you can cap your donation and feel good about the lives you are enriching. More details are available at www.runs4funds.org.
The spokesman added: “In addition Steven is organising a very special cricket match this summer on June 18th, which will further highlight the work of the charity.
“Hosted by Earl Spencer, Patron of Thomas’s Fund, on his private cricket pitch at Althorp House, two celebrity teams will face each other in a unique match with players past and present teaming up with a wide range of well known celebrities.
“Ticket holders will not only be entertained by the sport, but there will also be a tempting auction, evening entertainment and first class hospitality – plus live commentary throughout the game.
“Players confirmed so far include Graeme Swann, Paul Nixon, Monty Panesar, Chris Rogers, Devon Malcolm, Allan Lamb, David Willey and the rugby stars Paul Grayson and Ben Foden. Plus Jim Carter from Downton Abbey and Oliver and James Phelps – better known as The Weasley Twins! Peter Willey and George Sharp will be umpiring so you can no doubt expect some controversial decisions,” he added.
VIP Packages and Hospitality are available now. For details, visit www.runs4funds.org.
General admission to the public is a donation of £10 per adult – children under 16 go free! Tickets are available on the day, and will include a variety of concessions stalls and entertainment.