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Four Men. One Car. 2600 Miles. 92 Hours. One Football Goal.

A unique 92 hour window between England international football games inspired a group of passionate football fans, to visit all 92 League clubs in top flight football, sandwiched between the two England Internationals for the Help for Heroes Charity.

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October 28, 2013 (FPRC) -- Help for Heroes 92Plus1 Football Challenge Unites Wembley as Andros Townsend, Sir Geoff Hurst, Peter Shilton, Emile Heskey, Ray Stubbs, Luther Blissett, Micky Hazard and many leading Premiership clubs and sporting legends united with anti-racism charity Kick It Out to support a record breaking and unprecedented challenge at Wembley Stadium to support of leading UK charity, Help for Heroes.

A unique 92 hour window between England international football games inspired a group of passionate football fans, including Mark Burns, who is serving in the RAF, to attempt a unique "football fans first" of visiting all 92 League clubs in top flight football, sandwiched between the two England Internationals.

Simon Cox, Darren Young (RAF), Mark Burns (RAF) and Mike Peters left Wembley Stadium after England's game against Montenegro on Friday to take on the immense 2600 mile challenge over a 92 hour period to raise money for Battle Back, the sports rehabilitation initiative of Help for Heroes.

Simon Cox, 92 Plus 1 Challenge founder, said: “We cannot thank enough, those who have stepped forward to help us. We are receiving amazing support from some of the top people in the game and from so many passionate fans, as the Challenge is capturing the imagination of football fans everywhere. We are also delighted to announce that football's anti racism charity Kick it Out is fully supporting the Challenge. The Help for Heroes 92plus1 Football Challenge commenced on Friday and public response has been hugely supportive."

The Help for Heroes 92Plus1 fundraising team triumphed, having faced the daunting reality of navigating the UK's road network on the 2,600 mile journey, and achieved the unique challenge in just over 90 hours. “We believe this is a fantastic way for football to show its support for our wounded servicemen and women, many of whom will require support for the rest of their lifetimes” said Challenge co-organiser, Simon Cox.

Darren Young, Challenge co-organiser stated, “There were the inevitable mishaps along the way and we were immensely grateful and inspired by the amazing support received from fans around the country. The real challenge now will be to raise the funds required to help our heroes. We will auction the items we received from the clubs and the proceeds will help our heroes. Donations to support the Challenge can be made by texting: PLUS92 followed by £amount to 70070, or on our charity page at bemycharity. com/92plus1 The charity achieve fantastic results with serving and past personnel and it makes us proud to be British when we can see what they are achieving.”

"Members of our group have served in the forces for over 30 years and have seen with their own eyes how much good the funds raised for this fantastic charity will help those who have served to protect us. From a football fans view, it's an absolute honour to be involved in the Challenge and we are asking football fans everywhere to support our achievement and contribute to our cause" said Simon Cox.
PR and Marketing Communications for the Help for Heroes 92Plus1 Fundraising event was handled by leading UK PR Agency, Britannia Communications. Managing Partner, Angus Flood stated:
“Help for Heroes is a fantastic charity which supports severely wounded servicemen and women for the whole of their lives and we are delighted the coverage of the event has been so successful.”

The team completed the Challenge in a Help for Heroes Fundraising branded vehicle, supplied by Marshals of Milton Keynes. Principal Challenge sponsor was 138.com
Bryn Parry, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Help for Heroes stated:
“Help for Heroes was launched to raise money to help support our wounded. We appealed to the public to get out there and ‘do your bit’.
The 92plus1 Challenge united dedicated football fans across the UK. We will be able to use the money raised to provide practical, direct support to those who suffered life-changing injuries and illnesses while serving our country.”

The Help for Heroes 92Plus1 team were joined and supported on parts of the Challenge by former professional footballers Micky Hazard (former Spurs, Chelsea and Swindon Town legend), Daryl Sutch (former Norwich City defender), Trevor Benjamin (former Leicester City and Jamaican International), Barry Hayles (former Fulham and Jamaican International), Shaun Teale (former Aston Villa and Tranmere defender), Paul Gibbs (former Brentford, Colchester, Plymouth and Torquay defender) and Wayne Fereday (former QPR, Newcastle and Cardiff City winger).

Fans and media can actively support the amazing efforts of the team by donating to Help for Heroes by texting PLUS92 followed by £amount to 70070 to support Help for Heroes or at bemycharity.com/92plus1

ABOUT Help for Heroes Battle Back
When first faced with the reality of a life-changing injury or illness, many individuals experience a loss of confidence, depression, and believe that their active lives have ended. The sudden, traumatic change in physical ability makes them vulnerable to psychological and emotional stress which can alienate them from their friends and family.
Battle Back offers the chance for wounded, injured and sick Serving members of the Armed Forces and Veterans to re-build their confidence and develop new active skills which will help them on their road to recovery. The use of sport or outdoor activities has a proven track record to aid successful physical and psychological rehabilitation, providing the foundation for a positive self-image and outlook on life.
Battle Back uses adventurous training and adaptive sport to help the wounded get back into sport and to help them get ‘the wind in their faces and the sun on their backs’.
H4H is a founder partner of the MOD’s Battle Back programme and has provided £1.5m of funding to date.  Since Battle Back started, H4H has supported over 1,500 wounded, injured and sick personnel through grass roots activities such as sailing, swimming, cycling or water-skiing, and 80 individuals at an elite level across all summer and winter Paralympics sports.

ABOUT HELP FOR HEROES

·       Help for heroes provides practical support to serving and veteran members of the Armed Forces who have suffered life-changing injuries and illnesses.
·       All funds raised to date are either allocated or spent on the direct, practical support of those Servicemen and women who are wounded, injured or become sick while serving our country but there is still an urgent need to ensure that support can be there for life.
·       Help for Heroes focus is on providing support direct to individuals and their families, funding for capital projects and support for life.  We do this in the following ways:
o   Immediate financial support through the £6 Quick Reaction Fund.
o   Opportunities and training, through grants for courses or access to specialist equipment for the transition into civilian life through Individual Recovery Plans.
o   Essential, comprehensive support, from mental wellbeing to education, employment and financial advice for serving personnel, veterans and their families at our four nationwide Recovery Centres
o   Funding to other specialist charities – e.g. Blind Veteran’s UK, Combat Stress, Haig Housing Trust, Horseback UK, Winston’s Wish and Canine Partners.
o   Sport in Recovery - Adaptive Sports and Adventure Training to help seriously wounded Service personnel gain independence and confidence through funding initiatives such as the Armed Forces Battle Back programme, of which Help for Heroes are Founder Partners and a partnership with the British Paralympic Association
o   A lifelong support network for the wounded, injured, sick through the Band of Brothers and their families and loved ones through Band of Sisters.  These groups receive offers ranging from holidays to employment, financial and social support.
·       For more information on how the money raised is spent, visit the how we spend page of of our website.

About Britannia Communications

Britannia Communications Partnership is a leading UK and International Ethical Communications and Strategic Digital Marketing Agency. A key partner in a leading global network of strategic and financial communications consultancies, Britannia offers award winning, integrated corporate, ethical and financial PR and investor relations to a diverse group of businesses, charities and organisations on every corporate and financial communications issue affecting the boardroom and shaping public perception.

Press Contact

Ann Westwood
Principal Partner
Britannia Communications

Tel:+44 (0)207 060 3713

Web:www. britanniacommunications. com


Send an email to Ann Westwood of Britannia Communications
0207 060 3713

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