Five-mile pyjama walk will mean close shave for fundraiser Andy

CLOSE SHAVE Back from left, Jack and Alisha Bartholomew, Ellie-Mae and Chloe-Ann Churcher, front from left, Stacy Thornhill, Mark Foot and Layla Churcher holding Jack Foot.      Picture: Ian Hargreaves (111214-1)
CLOSE SHAVE Back from left, Jack and Alisha Bartholomew, Ellie-Mae and Chloe-Ann Churcher, front from left, Stacy Thornhill, Mark Foot and Layla Churcher holding Jack Foot. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (111214-1)
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PEOPLE usually get dressed up to go out.

But these children will be dressing down in their pyjamas to raise cash for Blue Day.

The youngsters will be taking part in a five-mile hike in their bed clothes from the Gosport Ferry to Stokes Bay and back on May 2, in aid of the Tom Prince Cancer Trust.

Layla Churcher, 26, of Highland Road, Gosport, and her three children Chloe-Ann, six, Ellie-Mae, five, and nine-month-old Jack have been collecting sponsors from their family, friends and classmates for the cause.

They will be joined by Layla’s partner, Mark Foot, 32, as well as the landlady of the Rose in Crown Pub in Gosport, Stacey Thornhill, 29, and her children Jack, nine, and Alisha, 11.

Layla said: ‘The kids are really excited about it.

‘The whole thing was their idea and they just can’t wait to get some blue pyjamas and go and do it. They’ve done stuff for Blue Day in their schools before but this is the first time we’ve organised something ourselves – they’ve collected lots of sponsors from their schools already.’

And on Blue Day itself, May 6, the Rose and Crown in Stoke Road will host a blue cake sale, head shave and hopefully a raffle from the pub, to raise even more cash.

Mark has been collecting sponsors to have one section of his hair shaved off for every mile the group walks.

Layla, who works at the Rose and Crown, said: ‘The customers in the pub have been getting behind it too, much more so than any other charity events we’ve tried to organise.

‘They are much more willing to put their hands in their pockets for Blue Day because it’s for a local charity and they know exactly where the money’s going, because it’s linked to their football team and because they know what it means to the kids.’

This is the fifth Blue Day and as always all money raised will go the Tom Prince Cancer Trust in memory of a teenage Pompey fan who died of osteosarcoma.

The charity was set up by Tom’s mum Adele, dad Clinton, and sister Emma shortly after his death in 2004, to fund research into the bone cancer.

They aim to raise £1m for the cause and have generated £580,000 to date – £150,000 of which was from the previous four Blue Days. If you’re planning an event, make sure you register as soon as possible to get your name on our Roll of Honour.