Baldock football team’s tribute to crash victim Jake
A FOOTBALL team has paid tribute to a teenager who was killed in a road accident last year by having the charity which his family donate money to on their shirts.
Baldock Town Youth FC Templars under 13s are wearing jerseys bearing brain injury charity Headway on them, which the family of Jake Chapman have been raising money for after the 14-year-old’s bike collided with a car last December.
Jake, who attended Knights Templar School, was taken to Lister Hospital following the crash in Norton Road, Baldock, but died in hospital later that night.
The players of the team decided on having Headway - which has a branch in the town - as this season’s sponsors after manager Graham Tomlinson suggested on choosing a charity instead of a business.
“We thought we’d go down the charity ‘Barcelona route’ as they have Unicef on their shirts and we wanted it to be a local charity or one with a local office,” said Graham.
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“The players wanted to have Headway as they all realise what it’s for. They are all aware of why we are doing it and it’s great to give something back to the community.
“I think most teams don’t have to pay for kit when it’s provided by sponsors so for the parents to pay for it must be quite unusual.”
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Jake’s mum Janet, who took part in a bungee jump earlier this year to raise funds for Headway, said: “Jake used to play for Baldock Town Youth and he loved it.
“If he wasn’t playing on a Sunday morning he was down watching Cannon FC, an adult football league team which I’m the secretary of. It’s very fitting.
“I would just like to wish them all every success for this season.”
In response, Graham added: “We’re joint top of the league at the moment and we’ve only lost one game so far so it’s working well!”
A Facebook campaign named ‘Get Lights on Norton Road and Lower the Speed Limit!!!’ was set up in April following Jake’s death, as the teenager was hit while cycling along the road at around 8pm on December 27.
So far the group has amassed more than 2,000 members.