THE grand total raised by more than 60 business leaders who camped out overnight at Fratton Park, to fight poverty and homelessness, has been revealed.
Influential figures from across Hampshire collected a whopping £47,000 after being sponsored to take part in the Pompey CEO Sleepout last month.
The funds will go towards supporting Pompey in the Community, the Society of St James and other charities working hard to improve the lives of the most vulnerable.
Andy Preston, founder and chairman of the national CEO Sleepout Charity UK, thanked the group for their efforts – and for making the first event of its kind in Portsmouth ‘a huge success’.
He revealed the project’s top 10 fundraisers, and the owner of Emsworth’s Bluebell Inn pub, Giles Babb, was fifth.
He raised £1,676 and said: ‘It’s fantastic to find out we raised £47,000.
‘It’s pleasing to raise any amount of money, but that really is a great total, especially considering this is the first CEO Sleepout in Portsmouth.
‘We really wanted to just raise awareness about what homeless people are going through.
‘As business leaders we used our profiles to raise the money, I used social media and got cash donations in through the pub.
‘It’s nice to be in the top five fundraisers, but it wasn’t a competition, we all just worked hard to raise what we could.
‘The homelessness problem is so bad but could be tackled easily. The government needs to do more.’
The event was part of a national initiative, which has raised more than £1.4m for causes fighting homelessness since 2013.
Mr Babb said he slept for a few hours on Portsmouth Football Club’s pitch and that it was cold, but the experience would never match what people without homes go through.