Wheelchair Basketball

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CONSTRUCTION workers, cricketers and shop workers were among the competitors in a fundraising wheelchair basketball competition.

The event was hosted by intu Metrocentre as part of the company’s sponsorship of the Go Bananas Appeal, which aims to raise £50,000 for The Chronicle Sunshine Fund during June.

The money will then be spent on specialist equipment to change the lives of 10 North East disabled children and hundreds more through the Percy Hedley Sports Academy.

Four teams took part in the wheelchair basketball matches, representing intu Metrocentre, sister shopping destination intu Eldon Square, Meldrum Construction and Durham Cricket Club, and more than £1,000 was raised through entry fees and the generosity of spectators.

And it was Meldrum Construction which came out on top, with the hosts in second, cricketers in third and Eldon Square in fourth.

Clare Savory, events manager, said: “Well done to all the teams that took part and congratulations to Meldrum Construction on winning the competition.

“This was the first time we had run the games in partnership with the Percy Hedley Sports Academy, but with little training the teams picked it up very quickly and all the games were very competitive.

“The money raised will go directly toward helping Percy Hedley Sports Academy receive 10 new sports wheelchairs.”

Winner Dave Meldrum added: “We were proud to have taken part, and having felt sure we would make fools of ourselves, we actually won!

“It was a fantastic event that will no doubt have turned a few heads on a busy Friday afternoon in the Metrocentre.”

Durham cricketer Phil Mustard led his side on the day. He said: “I have supported the Sunshine Fund for many years so was delighted to be asked to put in a team for the event.

“All the lads really enjoyed it and we are looking forward to next year’s event already. We were thrilled we could help raise the vital funds for the charity to support children in the Go Bananas campaign.”

Alex Hunter, marketing coordinator for intu Eldon Square, added: “The team had a great day, even though we came last. We will put plenty training in next year so we can come back fighting. We are delighted that the event raised so much money for the charity.”

  • To donate to Go Bananas, visit justgiving.com/Go-Bananas-June, call the office on 0191 201 6090, text GBSF55 followed by the amount to 70070, or deliver donations to The Chronicle’s office reception in Groat Market, Newcastle.
  • Alternatively, send cheques made payable to The Chronicle Sunshine Fund, Groat Market, Newcastle, NE1 1ED.