Most goalscorers in the Southern League collect a bonus when they find the back of the net – but Tony Lee is finding that his fine start to the season is costing him after pledging to local charity SPRING.
But the Dolphins frontman wouldn’t have it any other way, determined to add to his tally and further support a fantastic cause.
Lee, who currently leads the Southern League Premier South with nine goals scored, revealed that everytime he scores he will be donating a further £10 towards Cycle for SPRING, an event co-organised by Poole’s assistant manager Micky Hubbard.
Speaking to All Poole Aren’t We, Lee revealed: “There’s a charity close to Hubbsy’s heart, that he’s going to cycle for. I said every goal I score, I’d donate a tenner towards it – not thinking I’d have 11 goals in eight games.
“At the minute it’s cost me £110, and our goalkeeping coach [Andy] Fletcher has chucked in a tenner now and again, so I think we’re up to £150 in the first month of the season.
“It’s a great cause – it’s a hell of a cycle they’re doing. I thought it was the right thing to do, especially after having a little boy myself in the summer. So I just thought it was the perfect little thing to set up.”
Lee’s current contribution will only be a drop in the ocean, with the fundraiser already at £13,762 – over five times the original target of £2,500.
SPRING is a local charity that helps parents that suffer baby loss at any stage of a pregnancy, during or after birth – and offers their support to anyone, no matter the circumstance or however long ago.
Co-organisers Chris Travers and Hubbard explained on their JustGiving page: “The mutual experience of having babies born sleeping and the common desire to give something back to the organisation that supported us has been the catalyst for this event.
“Sadly, this journey starts with the tragic loss of our baby girls; Olivia-Mae and Cecelia. SPRING supported and cared for both families as well as the babies during very difficult times.
“SPRING provide emotional and practical support to bereaved parents and families following the loss of a baby at any stage of pregnancy, at or just after birth, whatever the circumstances and however long ago.
“SPRING’s Moon and Star Bereavement Suites and SPRING Garden at St Mary’s Maternity Unit, Poole, provide a safe and private space, away from the main maternity wards, for parents and families to spend precious time with their baby before saying goodbye, and a place where they receive specialised support from trained bereavement midwives.
“Like most things, having someone to talk to who has also suffered what you are going through helps in the bereavement process. It was during this time we discovered our shared aspiration to organise an event – the purpose of the event was threefold.
“Firstly, so at least once a year the world would remember our girls. Secondly, to promote awareness of SPRING and the immense work they do within our community. Finally, to raise much needed funds so they can continue their invaluable work.
“During his bereavement process Micky purchased a bike and quickly realised the holistic benefits of cycling. Fast-forward a few months to just after the first lockdown and a fairly flippant comment suggesting a bike ride to Paris for SPRING. Little did we know that Micky actually meant to Paris and back. So, there we have it, the creation of CYCLE FOR SPRING (CFS).”
Original plans for the cycle were to bike all the way to Paris and back, originally in 2020 – but due to numerous lockdowns and COVID restrictions, the event has had to be re-organised and planned.
A group of nine cyclists, including Hubbard, Poole players Will Spetch and Corby Moore, as well as ex-Dolphins Dan Cann and Adam Costello, will instead cover the same distance by cycling to Wembley, Bath and Torquay.
They will set off on the 30th of September from Poole hospital, before returning there on October the 3rd.
The group will cover roughly a 100 miles each day, for a total of 431 miles in all.
You can make a donation by clicking this link here: https://www.justgiving.com/team/CYCLEFORSPRING?fbclid=IwAR1hFRJTK-sscG10Ixmlp3EAKv9XhOAZ-JqdXERdlIF_KOOd8qjSVkKcB6Y
The cycle is also being sponsored by local companies The Cosmetic Clinic, Abakon Flooring, Bluechip Financial, SWD, W&S Recycling, KDW Property Services and Parvalux.