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Absent soap stars prove costly for King’s Lynn charity

Red Wellies Charity Football Match at King's Lynn Walks Stadium.

Borough Mayor and Mayoress Barry  and Christine Ayres with Luther Blissett ANL-141205-103101001

Red Wellies Charity Football Match at King's Lynn Walks Stadium. Borough Mayor and Mayoress Barry and Christine Ayres with Luther Blissett ANL-141205-103101001

TV soap fans were left disappointed when Hollyoaks stars failed to turn up for a charity football match at The Walks on Sunday.

And the mix-up was a major blow to Lynn-based Red Wellies who still face a £1,750 appearance money bill.

Charity workers were filled with “shock, horror and disappointment” when they heard at midnight on Saturday that four of the stars would not be there due to filming.

Ayden Callaghan, Charlie Wernham and Fabrizio Santino who play Joe, Robbie and Ziggy Roscoe, and also Aaron Fontaine who plays Sonny Valentine, told events company End Of Your Rainbow Events Management two weeks earlier.

Ayden Callaghan tweeted: “We notified the organisers of the team weeks ago. We were required to film – unfortunately nothing we can do about that. We hoped one or two might make it if we finished.”

The game, featuring former England player Luther Blissett went ahead. It is hoped it still raised enough to raise a significant sum.

Mervyn Wiles, trustee of the charity set up after the death of his daughter, Lisa, in 2011, said: “We’re obviously very disappointed in the management company. They’ve really let us down. I do understand filming commitments are part of the job, but they knew two weeks ago”

The events company is adamant it is not to blame.

“I do apologise and hopefully the good people of Lynn will realise it was out of our hands and that they had a good time anyway. If we’ve made a profit for the charity, I’ll be happy.”

Sunday’s event, which was hosted by The Walks Stadium, was raising funds for Middleton-based charity, Red Wellies Brain Tumour Support, in memory of 43-year-old Lisa Wiles, who died of a brain tumour in October 2011.

Kerry Carter’s 14-year-old daughter attended the match, she said: “My daughter is not a football fan so went with the sole purpose of getting to meet an actor from her favourite soap which she watches religiously. She even bought a programme with her pocket money in the hope of getting it signed. I’m very happy the event still went ahead as it was in aid of a great cause, but I feel the Hollyoaks stars left many fans feeling very let down.”

Organisers had been planning the event for six months and were hoping to raise a large amount to support research into this aggressive form of cancer, glioblastoma multiforme.

Vice-chairman of the charity Jo Rust, said: “We worked with what we thought was a professional company and paid a lot of money for a service that wasn’t delivered. We didn’t want to let people down, it was very much the fault of this company, they just failed to let us know.

“Despite this, the event was a success and we very much appreciate that many of the spectators who had come to see these celebrities stayed to support the event.

“I appreciate that there is a cost for the service, but I hope that at tonight’s meeting we will be looking at how we can get some of this money back.”

 

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