‘Events like this show what a great city Portsmouth is’ - CEO Sleepout raises cash for city’s homeless

Arthur Bailey from Cosham ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (180606-7076)

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FROM the solid ground beneath them to the chilly nights that make their blood run cold, rough sleepers fight a number of dangers every night.

Sometimes left with no alternative but to sleep exposed to the elements, their plight is a truly heartbreaking one.

From left ' Mark Cubbon (Chief Executive of Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust), Clare Martin (Director of Community Projects for Portsmouth FC), Mark Waldron (Editor of The News), Cllr. Donna Jones (Leader of Portsmouth City Council) and Mark Catlin (Chief Executive, Portsmouth FC)

From left ' Mark Cubbon (Chief Executive of Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust), Clare Martin (Director of Community Projects for Portsmouth FC), Mark Waldron (Editor of The News), Cllr. Donna Jones (Leader of Portsmouth City Council) and Mark Catlin (Chief Executive, Portsmouth FC)

But last night, businessmen and women from across the region joined forces to not only raise money for rough sleepers, but also increase awareness for what these people go through on a daily basis.

The CEO Sleepout at Fratton Park saw almost 100 people turn out in their sleeping bags, with the money raised from the event being split between the Society of St James, Pompey in the Community and the national CEO Sleepout.

CEO of Portsmouth FC, Mark Catlin, said the event made him ‘very proud’ of what the city represents.

He said: ‘Events like this show what a great city Portsmouth is, as people come together to help out the most under-privileged people in the city.

SLEEPING OUT From left ' John Beresford (Managing Director of Buckland Development), Gary Jeffries (Chairman of Solent LEP), Mark Thistlethwayte (High Sheriff of Hampshire) and Anne-Marie Mountfield (Solent LEP Chief Executive)

SLEEPING OUT From left ' John Beresford (Managing Director of Buckland Development), Gary Jeffries (Chairman of Solent LEP), Mark Thistlethwayte (High Sheriff of Hampshire) and Anne-Marie Mountfield (Solent LEP Chief Executive)

‘So much work has been put in by so many different people to make this happen, and I am really proud to see the sleepout take place here.’

Editor of The News Mark Waldron said: ‘It is fantastic – it is a bit cold and it certainly got colder, but that really is the point of doing this.

‘The thing that has given me the most warmth is how many people signed up.

‘The people of Portsmouth have got behind us and so many people have raised not only a huge amount of money, but a lot of awareness too.

The CEO Sleepout at Pompey's Fratton Park Picture: Malcolm Wells (180416-6376)

The CEO Sleepout at Pompey's Fratton Park Picture: Malcolm Wells (180416-6376)

‘Just by giving up a few hours of our own time, we have been able to get people thinking and talking about a huge issue.

‘The turnout for this has been incredible, and I would like to thank everyone who has supported this amazing cause.’

For more information about Sleepout events across the country, visit ceosleepoutuk.com