doc

This year’s top 10 quirkiest fundraisers for the British Heart Foundation have been announced, with one of them being a man from Hersham.

Dan Poole is trying to gather all the signatures of the 1993/1994 Manchester United first team – a project he began in 2014.

In 2001, goalkeeper Les Sealey died following a heart attack at 43, and two years later Dan’s dad also suffered a heart attack.

It was this that inspired him to fundraise for the BHF, using a 1993/1994 season review book signed by Paul Scholes that he won when he was 12.

Dan said: “I rediscovered the season-review book when I moved house and decided this could be a great way to fundraise for the BHF. Les died of a heart attack, and my father also had a heart attack in 2003.

“Thankfully my dad survived and is still going strong, but I know many people don’t. I decided to try and gather all 33 signatures in the book to help raise money for the BHF, and hopefully, in some small way, help others, and their families, who suffer from heart problems.

“Some signatures have been easier to get hold of than others. I have met two former players in person, but the book has clocked up a lot of miles across the world, being posted to and from the players who I have tracked down so far. Up to now it has travelled nearly 22,000 miles and has been as far as Copenhagen and Singapore.”

Your Local Guardian:

Dan with Dion Dublin

Dan’s tally currently stands at 26 signatures, with seven more needed, including iconic squad members David Beckham, Eric Cantona and Roy Keane.

Once every player has signed the book, he plans to auction it for the charity.

Lewis Honeywill, fundraising manager for Surrey and Berkshire at the British Heart Foundation, said: “It is only because of people like Dan that we can continue funding our life saving research into beating heart disease.

“It’s great to see all the weird and wonderful ways our fundraisers raise money, and we are so incredibly grateful for the time and effort that they put in and the people who support them. By following in their footsteps, you too could join our fight against heart disease and help us save lives.”

If you have your own quirky ideas to raise money, sign up to receive a free fundraising pack at bhf.org.uk/doyourthing.