Tom Daley's trunks to make a splash at charity auction
TOM DALEY'S trunks will be up for grabs at a charity auction this weekend.
Sports stars including footballer Lionel Messi, champion cyclist Bradley Wiggins, Plymouth's very own Olympian Tom, and ex-boxer Mike Tyson have signed items for a charity auction being held at the Life Centre.
A group of local fundraisers have organised the Spirit of Sport auction in aid of Meningitis UK and Plymouth-based Snowdrop Appeal and 42 Commando.
Tom and fellow Olympic divers Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow, and their coach Andy Banks, are backing the fundraiser and hope to attend on the day.
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Tom, who started diving aged seven and is a member of Plymouth Diving, said: "It is a pleasure to support the charity sports night at the Life Centre. The aim is to raise as much as possible for these wonderful charities.
"So please attend, donate and give generously – every penny helps. Many thanks."
The star and his colleagues said they would do their best to attend the evening, depending on their schedule, as it coincides with the national diving championships at the centre.
There will be around 30 lots including Daley-signed trunks and a private diving lesson with him, John Terry-signed football boots, a London Wasps-signed rugby shirt and America's Cup sailing legend Dennis Conner-signed jacket.
David 'Fitz' FitzGerald, from BBC Radio Devon and local newspaper columnist, will take on the role of auctioneer.
The fundraiser is co-organised by Meningitis UK community ambassador Becky McLaren, of Saltash.
Becky, 41, lost her seven-month-old step-granddaughter Gracie Violet to meningitis in February 2011.
She said: "There will be so many fantastic items up for grabs. It's touching to see people's generosity.
"We hope as many people as possible come, so we can raise all we can for the three amazing charities.
"We are supporting Meningitis UK as we sadly lost Gracie.
"We are backing 42 Commando as a friend lost her husband, Marine Sam Alexander MC, who tragically died in Afghanistan.
"And we are also supporting Snowdrop as another friend's daughter was born sleeping.
"We are committed to fundraising to help these worthwhile charities, so they can continue to help others."
There will also be entertainment for the family including a raffle, face painting, gymnastic/dancing displays, local traders' stalls and refreshments.
The fundraisers all work for Lloyds TSB who have agreed to match fund anything they raise.
The event takes place at the Life Centre on Sunday from 5pm with the auction at 7pm. Entry is free.