Forest legend’s charity goal

John McGovern and fundraisers at the event
John McGovern and fundraisers at the event

Nottingham Forest legend John McGovern has teamed up with a Kimberley pub owned by a Watnall couple to raise hundreds of pounds for the Guide Dogs for the Blind charity

McGovern, the Reds’ former European Cup-winning captain is now an ambassador at the City Ground.

But he still found time to be at the White Lion in Swingate, which is run by Graham Sharp and Yvonne Shanks, for a big charity fundraiser.

A friendship first established between Dave Martin and the Reds legend three years ago is behind their commitment to raise money for Guide Dogs.

Dave,82,of Bulwell, and McGovern ‘skippered’ the latest event at the White Lion.

The ex-Forest man, who was a vital cog in the all-conquering side put together by Brian Clough, kicked things off by captivating an audience of more than 60 people with his ‘Audience With McGovern’ in which he shared his memories of the Reds’ greatest triumphs under Clough and Peter Taylor.

Following a remarkable transformation of the run down White Lion premises, licensees Graham and Yvonne, who were devastated by the untimely death of their great friend Ian ‘Frankie Martin’ Campbell who was scheduled to appear at charity events in the future, pledged their on-going support to Guide Dogs and to other good causes including Help For Heroes.

“Like John McGovern we too have formed a friendship with Dave and we are equally as keen to help to lend our support.” they said

Dave’s daughter, Sandra Taylor, and her husband Gary provided support to the charity event, which was compered by Alan March and raised a £652 for the cause thanks to bumper crowds.

While Cloughie’s former captain was the class act there was no doubting the fantastic efforts that had been put in to make the event a winner.

A signed football which was up for grabs in an auction went to Paul Jones from Newthorpe following a generous £85 bid, while another prize up for grabs, a hamper of home-made preserves donated by Ian Campbell before his death, was snapped up for £52 by Guide Dogs’ champion Rachel Dye from Underwood.

Delighted by the success of the first social charity event since the Lion’s refurbishment, Graham and Yvonne said: “The spirit of friendship has shone through and those present dug deep.”