YOUNG footballers have completed an eight-mile fundraising walk as they bid to pay for a pre-season tour.

Members of Island Girls under 11 and 12 teams completed the walk from the Lobster Smack pub, in Haven Road, all the way along the perimeter of Canvey’s seawall to Smallgains Hall, in Smallgains Avenue to fundraise for their pre-season tour.

Team managers Paul Blackwell and Tony Smith joined their players for the gruelling walk. The club says it is very proud of their young players, who celebrated finishing the walk by having a barbecue.

Mr Smith, a committee member at Island Boys and Girls, says the walk adds to a number of ways the club has been fundraising for its players.

He said: “It was a very long walk, at least eight miles, and they did very well.

“We are entering the carnival and have held a race night which raised about £450, it all goes back into the club and with girls football on the rise, we are hoping to add an under 10s team.

“It has all been done so the girls can benefit.”

Peter May, vice-chairman, says he is proud of the club’s community focus and paid tribute to their ongoing work.

Mr May, a former player and a borough councillor, said: “We are all about the community and we have done quite a number of things for the island.

“This includes going to the care homes at Christmas and Easter handing out presents and things like that. The club has grown a lot since it was formed after the 1966 World Cup.”

Youngsters at the club have also raised money at the island’s annual Armed Forces Day.

The club celebrated its 50th anniversary in September last year.

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