Community review: December

The latest overview of the club's community efforts, this time focusing upon the month of December

In the run up to the festive season, Wanderers’ presence in the local community was as evident as ever, with Darren Pratley and Rob Hall kicking off the month with a surprise visit to local youngster Jon Anderson.

The 13-year-old from Great Lever, who had been involved in a road traffic accident on his way to last year's Bolton Christmas lights switch on, was rushed to the Manchester Infirmary for treatment and as a result spent his 13th birthday under close medical supervision.

And upon hearing of the news Pratley and Hall, alongside Community Ambassador Tony Kelly, headed round to his residence to personally deliver a get well card signed by the first team squad and a Bolton Wanderers home shirt.

To watch the trio's visit in action, please CLICK HERE.

Meanwhile, over 1,200 people attended the club’s annual Silent Night Carol Service, held in Macron Stadium’s Premier Suite and led by club chaplain Phil Mason.

With the event itself forming part of the club’s tributes honouring 100 years since the outbreak of World War I, eleven schools came together to form a 300-strong choir, supported by a brass band.

At the service itself, it was announced that the Whites’ shirt manufacturers Macron would be donating 150 pieces of warm clothing to Urban Outreach, a charity which specialises in supporting those without homes.

As the month progressed, manager Neil Lennon took his full squad of first team players to the BWFC Juniors Christmas to celebrate the festive period with young Whites fans.

Club captain Jay Spearing and new signing Eidur Gudjohnsen, alongside Neil, were just three of those involved in a question and answer session with the youngsters, before the entire squad took their seats for a signing session as the BWFC Juniors members queued up to have their photographs taken with 
their favourite players.                                  

For more information on BWFC Juniors and future events, please visit while footage of the event can be found by CLICKING HERE.

An annual occurrence within the local community, December also saw the first teamers take time out to deliver presents and festive cheer to three charities and hospices in and around the area.

Andrew Lonergan, Conor Wilkinson, Dean Moxey, Jay Spearing, Liam Feeney, Liam Trotter, Neil Danns and Ross Fitzsimons were all in attendance at Derian House Children’s Hospice in Chorley – an organisation which is renowned throughout the region as being at the forefront of children’s palliative and respite care and is currently caring for over 300 families who have a child with a life-shortening illness.

Elsewhere, Matt Mills, Lee Chung-Yong, Adam Bogdan, Rob Hall, Dorian Dervite, Max Clayton and Oscar Threlkeld were all present to meet patients and staff at Royal Bolton Hospital and hand out Bolton Wanderers themed gifts and various toys.

Finally, Tim Ream, Craig Davies, Darren Pratley, Kevin McNaughton, David Wheater, Sanmi Odelusi and Medo Kamara, alongside Community Ambassador Tony Kelly, took time out of their schedule to deliver gifts to a number of Bolton Hospice’s day patients and permanent residents.

With those there being treated to various gift sets, chocolates and biscuits amongst other treats, the Hospice is an organisation which provides free palliative care for people in Bolton who are facing cancer and other life-limiting illnesses, with the care being delivered at the Inpatient Unit, Support Services or in a patient’s own home. 

As the big day itself drew ever nearer, Ream and Tony Kelly paid a special festive visit to thank a family who have supported the club for over five different generations.

The duo made the trip to the Darwell’s family home in Leigh shortly before Christmas to surprise Sub Lieutenant Joseph Darwell and his wife Rachel, their five month old son Louis and his grandfathers James Darwell and John Pickup with a selection of merchandise and their own private box for the Whites’ clash against Watford.

The arrival of baby Louis in July of this year marked a brand new generation of Bolton fans in the Darwell family, with the youngster already showing his support for Wanderers having been presented with a blessed BWFC scarf at his christening.

Click on the video player below to watch their visit to the Darwell family.

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