WWI heroes remembered in charity event at Cambridge United

PUBLISHED: 11:30 09 March 2018 | UPDATED: 11:43 09 March 2018

Presenting the match ball for Cambridge United v Luton were Jack Entwistle, 8, whose great-great grandfather, Private Ernest Muggleton from Grantchester, served in WWI and Lily Turpin, 4, who wore her great grandfather, Sgt Richard Turpin's WWI medals. He served in the Cambridgeshire Regiment. Finley Bagnall  (wearing the hat) is five. He's the son of the Regimental Sergeant Major of the Cambridge University Officer Training Corps. Picture: Keith Heppell

Presenting the match ball for Cambridge United v Luton were Jack Entwistle, 8, whose great-great grandfather, Private Ernest Muggleton from Grantchester, served in WWI and Lily Turpin, 4, who wore her great grandfather, Sgt Richard Turpin's WWI medals. He served in the Cambridgeshire Regiment. Finley Bagnall (wearing the hat) is five. He's the son of the Regimental Sergeant Major of the Cambridge University Officer Training Corps. Picture: Keith Heppell

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Almost £800 raised despite cancellation of half time five-a-side game

Soldiers, children and organiser Vanessa Burkitt on the pitch. Picture: Keith HeppellSoldiers, children and organiser Vanessa Burkitt on the pitch. Picture: Keith Heppell

A fundraising event during Cambridge United’s home draw with Luton Town on Saturday (March 3) raised almost £800 for the Royal Anglian Regiment – despite the charity match having to be 
called off.

The icy effects of the ‘Beast from the East’ left the U’s game in doubt but the Abbey ground staff worked tirelessly to ensure the fixture and the fundraising event went ahead.

But the organisers lost their five-a-side game during half-time and had to be content with a bucket collection.

The event was in remembrance of the British and German soldiers who played in the 1914 Christmas Truce match in no man’s land.

Soldiers and trumpeter Laurine Green, bandmaster of the Ely Military band, walk onto the pitch for the Last Post. Picture: Keith HeppellSoldiers and trumpeter Laurine Green, bandmaster of the Ely Military band, walk onto the pitch for the Last Post. Picture: Keith Heppell

Sponsored by Catherine Jones of Cambridge, it was just one of a host of events being co-ordinated by the Bridge Street jewellery store’s managing director Vanessa Burkitt to mark the centenary.

She was delighted with the response and the efforts of the U’s who went out of their way to help, and said: “I would like to thank everyone. One lady, Laurine Green of the Ely Military Band, brought her trumpet and played the Last Post. It was a spine tingling moment.

“The club were phenomenal and made time for us. They have offered us the chance to play the five-a-side game on another occasion.”

Stars of the show were three young children who presented the match ball. They all had relatives who had fought in the war. Among them was eight-year-old Jack Entwistle, who was honouring his great grandfather, Private Ernest Muggleton. He was joined by Lily Turpin, four, and five-year-old Finley Bagnall, who were all equally proud of their relatives.

Vanessa added: “There was not a dry eye in the house when they presented the ball.”

The amount raised was £784 and the event is just the first in a number being held throughout the year.

The next is cricket at Fenner’s and Ms Burkitt added: “The next one is the cricket on Sunday, July 8, ‘orchestrated’ by Henry Blofeld.

“Cricketer Majid Khan has confirmed he will be flying in from Pakistan as our guest of honour.”

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