A detailed overview of Wanderers' presence in the Bolton community in the run up to Christmas
With the festive season fast approaching, more than 1,200 people attended the club’s annual Christmas Carol Service which was held in the Premier Suite in early December.
Those present were joined by a number of local primary schools and choirs, with club chairman Phil Gartside also attending the event which was broadcast on 107.4 Tower FM on Christmas morning.
Pupils from schools such as The Oaks Hardy Mill, Walmsley C of E, Chorley New Road and St Gregory's RCP sang hymns and read poems, with the Bolton Junior Youth Choir and the Millennium Chapel Gospel Choir also featuring throughout the evening.
The service itself raised £733 from donations for Urban Outreach – money which was then used towards 600 hampers for families across Bolton on Christmas Day.
Dougie Freedman also took his full squad of first team players to the BWFC Juniors Christmas Party to celebrate the festive period with club’s young supporters.
The manager and his team first took their place on the stage to answer questions relating to the yuletide period and those in attendance heard David Wheater quizzed on how many reindeers he could name, Neil Danns revealed his favourite Christmas film while Chris Eagles named his best and worst ever presents.
Following on from the Q&A session Freedman and his players took their seats for a signing session where the BWFC Juniors members queued up to have their photographs taken with their favourite players as well as getting their 2014 BWFC calendars signed.
The first teamers were back in the community to spread festive cheer in the run up to the big day with visits to Royal Bolton Hospital, Bolton Hospice and Derian House.
Whilst Jay Spearing led the likes of Jermaine Beckford, Neil Danns, Chung-Yong Lee, Rob Hall and Mark Davies to the E5 children’s ward at Royal Bolton Hospital, Zat Knight, Stuart Holden and a handful of other players visited Derian House Childrens’ Hospice in Chorley to hand over gifts and donations.
At the same time, another group of players including Tim Ream and Darren Pratley visited Bolton Hospice to spend time with those visiting the facility on Chorley New Road for respite care.
Amongst the presents distributed were a selection of gift sets for the adults, while the gifts delivered to the hospital included computer games, electronic learning toys, DVDs and a large selection of interactive, sensory and educational play items as chosen by play specialists.