World Cup winner backs charity appeal

Sky Sports News presenter Pete Graves, right, interviews Sir Geoff Hurst on stage. Picture by Rob Chambers.
Sky Sports News presenter Pete Graves, right, interviews Sir Geoff Hurst on stage. Picture by Rob Chambers.

World Cup hero Sir Geoff Hurst has given his backing to a local charity.

The football star – still the only player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup final – helped raise money at The Percy Hedley Foundation’s Hat Trick Dinner.

I don’t come to the north east very often but it’s a brilliant charity and it was a thoroughly enjoyable evening

Sir Geoff Hurst

More than 250 people listened to Sir Geoff, 73, recall his memories of England’s famous 4-2 win over West Germany in 1966.

Sir Geoff said: “The Percy Hedley Foundation does some fantastic work for children and adults with cerebral palsy in the north east and it’s nice to do as much as I can to help.

“What started as a group of parents in 1953 has grown into something quite remarkable that supports over 1,000 families each year.

“I don’t come to the north east very often but it’s a brilliant charity and it was a thoroughly enjoyable evening.

“These evenings lend themselves to football fans, who can pick up some great memorabilia and raise vital funds in the process.”

Money raised on the night went towards the Foundation’s Splash Appeal.

Sir Geoff added: “Percy Hedley’s target is £4m for a project that includes a children’s residential unit and a hydrotherapy pool, and I hope the event can raise the profile and help the charity reach its target.”

The Splash Appeal hopes to raise £1m to fund a state-of-the-art hydrotherapy pool in Killingworth that will bring huge benefit to children and adults with cerebral palsy in the north east.

Sir Geoff flew in from France especially for the event and organiser Danny Mitchell thanked the England hero for his support.

“It was the seventh time that I’ve worked with Sir Geoff and he never ceases to amaze me with how much of a gentleman he is,” Danny said.

“The night was a huge success and was very well received by everyone who attended.”