Family of Tom Prince call for Portsmouth to help reach Â£1m with Blue Day
HELP us reach our Â£1m target with this year's Blue Day.
That is the call from the family of Tom Prince as they get ready to hold Blue Day 2016 on Friday, May 6.
Since starting the Tom Prince Cancer Trust in 2004 in memory of Pompey fan Tom, his family has raised £980,000.
Now, Blue Day 2016 – supported by The News – could see them achieve the £1m mark set 10 years ago.
The money for the Tom Prince Cancer Trust raises funds for research into osteosarcoma – the bone cancer Tom died of in 2004 on the eve of his 16th birthday.
His parents Adele and Clinton and sister Emma are now calling on people across the Portsmouth area – including schools and businesses – to wear blue on May 6 and help raise money for the trust to make it a magical million.
Clinton, from Southsea, said: ‘This could be our last big push to get past that £1m target and we want the city of Portsmouth to help us do that.
‘It is a massive sum of money to raise but hopefully we can smash it.
‘We are so close, we are almost there and it would be great to see Blue Day push us over the mark.
‘We want to say a huge thanks to everyone who has supported Blue Day and taken part.
‘There are lots of people who have been so generous over the years and it’s thanks to them we are closing in on the £1m.
‘At the moment, we have raised about £980,000 and a lot of that is thanks to Blue Day.’
The first Blue Day was held in April 2008 when Pompey reached the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley.
There was another one held the day before the final, which Pompey lifted the Cup after beating Cardiff 1-0.
Since then, Blue Day, backed by The News and Pompey, has been held every year the day before the club’s last home game of the football season.
It sees hundreds of school children and businesses from across the area dress in blue and hold blue-themed activities.
From blue cakes being sold and blue wigs donned, the day has also seen sandwiches with blue mayonnaise sold and stores kitted out in blue banners and balloons.
The day raises around £15,000 so the Prince family are calling on as many people as possible to take part, which could be key in pushing the charity’s fundraising total past £1m.
Adele said: ‘The first Blue Day was incredible and it would be great if people who took part in our first one, could sign up again this year.
‘Over the two days we raised £160,000 and seeing that much money was surreal.
‘We really want this to be the push for that £1m target.’
The family admitted there were times when the £1m seemed a long way off.
But Emma said they never stopped believing they could get there in Tom’s memory.
‘We realised it was huge figure but we never doubted that we would reach it,’ she said. ‘The drive and commitment to reach the £1m was always there from the family and the people of Portsmouth have supported us massively. Obviously there were times when it was hard and it did seem like it would take years and years to reach it but we never gave up.
‘We have been determined to raise the money and it is fantastic being so close.’
She added: ‘It is just the nicest feeling when I am travelling to work on Blue Day and I see all the kids in blue and shops with blue balloons.
‘It’s amazing to see so many people taking part in something for you.’
This year’s Blue Day is on Friday, May 6, the day before Pompey’s final home match of the season against Northampton Town.
People wanting to take part can register online at tomprince.co.uk
Supporters of first Blue Day asked to register again
MORE than £150,000 was raised when Blue Day first took place in 2008.
Scores of businesses and schools from across the Portsmouth area spent the day in blue and raising money for the Tom Prince Cancer Trust.
And now, the family of Tom Prince are calling on those people who took part in the first Blue Day to take part again this year.
It comes as the trust looks to pass the £1m target it set in 2004 when 15-year-old Pompey fan Tom Prince died from a rare form of bone cancer.
His mum Adele said: ‘I still remember now being in the Lloyd’s bank after the first Blue Day and there was so much money.
‘A Pompey bus was parked out the front and it was full of buckets with cash inside. It was a surreal moment but it was great. It would be fantastic if people who took part in the first-ever Blue Day show us that support again this year.
‘It would definitely help this year’s event be the best yet.’
Schools and businesses who sign up for Blue Day will feature in The News on our Roll of Honour.
In the first-ever Blue Day, held on April 4, 2008, around 170 people signed up to take part
This year’s Roll of Honour will be updated as people register and will appear alongside Blue Day stories in the paper and on our website portsmouth.co.uk