LATEST NEWS STORIES FROM CHAD
Stags' fans ready to hit road for Chelsea
CHAD, 22 Sep
MANSFIELD Town's generous football fans will be hitting the road again on Saturday for little Chelsea Barsby.
Up to 20 Stags' supporters will be cycling from Field Mill on a 53-mile ride to Scunthorpe United in time for Mansfield's top of the table Division II match at Glanford Park.
The annual Chelsea Barsby Campaign (CBC) Bike Ride will again be raising funds to help six-year-old Skegby girl Chelsea, who is fighting eye cancer, and other children with the condition.
The sponsored riders and their support crew, who aim to raise thousands of pounds for the CBC,will be waved off from Mansfield by Mayor Tony Egginton at 7.45am and arriving at Scunthorpe via Ollerton, Tuxford, Dunham Bridge, Gainsborough and Messingham. On arrival at Glanford Park the riders will be holding a collection, before doing a lap of honour around the pitch prior to kick-off.
The CBC was established over two years ago to raise funds for Chelsea, who was born with cancer in both eyes and now only has 15-20 per cent vision left in her one remaining eye.
In that time the CBC — largely supported by Stags' fans — has purchased specialist equipment, sent Chelsea on a dream holiday to Disney World and made substantial donations to other children with eye cancer.
"We would like to thank everyone at Scunthorpe United for all their help and generosity in helping make this year's ride a success. We cannot raise the thousands we do without the support of the clubs involved and Scunthorpe have been fantastic," said CBC trustee Graham Parker.
This is the third annual CBC Bike Ride with previous trips being made to Notts County and Doncaster Rovers.
Thanks to football fans from Mansfield and Doncaster, Chelsea had her dream holiday this year when she flew to Florida to meet her Disney heroes and swim with dolphins, as reported in Chad recently.
This year's ride aims to raise money for specialist equipment for Chelsea's schooling and to help other children in her situation.
"The CBC Bike Ride has become a firm fixture in the lower league football programme with fans up and down the country taking the cause to their hearts. The day of the match itself will be amazing as the Mansfield Town fans have virtually adopted Chelsea and will go wild when the riders and Chelsea take the field; with some 2,000 of them expected at the match they are bound to make some serious noise," added Mr Parker.
Anger over rogue BNP Stags' badge
CHAD, 22 Sep
ROGUE merchandise sellers have been spotted selling pin-badges linking Mansfield Town Football Club with the far-right British National Party, it was revealed this week.
One angry Stags' fan, who asked to remain anonymous, told Chad he saw badges being sold outside the club's Field Mill ground after the Northampton game earlier this month — with one design clearly featuring both the BNP logo and the MTFC crest.
"I'm personally shocked by it. They're associating themselves with our club, and I'd rather have nothing to do with it," he said. "I take my kids with me to the games and I don't want them to be exposed to that kind of thinking at their age."
Mansfield Town chiefs have moved quickly to warn football fans that the badges are not official club merchandise.
Stags' chairman Keith Haslam told Chad: "We have had a couple of e-mails informing us about the sale of these badges. These sellers do not support the football club and we would discourage our supporters from buying the badges.
"We disassociate ourselves from these type of organisations and we are in no way associated with the BNP. Supporters should buy items from the club shop, which does support the club."
The BNP has also insisted that it has nothing to do with the badges with East Midlands regional organiser Mark Stringfellow saying: "All official BNP merchandise has only our logo on it. These reported badges have nothing to do with us, and we'd like to get to the bottom of it, as it means there is a breach of copyright going on. We have had a lot of trouble recently with people printing their own enamel badges."
STAGS RAGE AT BNP BADGES
The Chairman of Mansfield Town has expressed concern about the sale of badges linking the football club with the British National Party.
Keith Haslam said the Stags supported campaigns to rid football of racism and were in no way connected with the far-right party.
He was responding to complaints that badges were being sold outside the ground with both the BNP logo and the MTFC crest.
He said: "We are signed up with Let's Kick Racism Out of Football and we promote that strongly.
"We would have nothing to do with an organisation like the BNP. The badges are nothing to do with the club."
Mr Haslam said the club had received no official complaints from fans.
The BNP also said it had nothing to do with the badges.
Alison Vaughan, campaigns director of Let's Kick Racism Out of Football, said: "We applaud the efforts of the fans and the club in disassociating themselves from racism. It shows that people believe racism has no place in football."
She encouraged all fans to complain to their clubs and councils if they see racist merchandise on sale.
Latest | September 2004