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Gaz and Co Do the Business

A five-man team led by Oldham RL captain Gareth ‘Gaz’ Owen braved high winds and continuously driving rain to complete the Three Peaks Challenge in Yorkshire on Saturday to raise funds for Waterhead ARLFC supporter Thomas Lees, who suffers from cerebral palsy.

Moorside-based Owen, a Waterhead junior before embarking on a pro career that took him to Salford, Sheffield and hometown Oldham, where he has been captain for the past four years, conquered Pen-y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough with his pals and current Waterhead players Mitchell Birch, Matty Holland, Dale Lowe and Jenson Hamilton.

Left to right: Jenson Hamilton, Mitchell Birch, Gareth Owen, Dale Lowe. In front:, Matthew Holland

Matthew Holland, Mitchell Birch, Gareth Owen, Dale Lowe, Jenson Hamilton

They were raising money for 19-year-old Thomas, a grandson of Waterhead legend Steve Webb, who is desperately in need of a communications device costing more than £8,000.

Said Gareth:

“The initial target is £4,000 and we’re about 85 per cent of the way there. A massive thank-you to everyone who has donated and who sent best wishes.

“We set a seven-hour target and we finished a few minutes outside it but considering the appalling weather and to say that none of us had previously hiked anything like that distance, or those gradients, we were very proud.

“Once we reached the third peak it was nine miles back to the car and that’s when the pains started.

“Two of the lads started to cramp up and my knees, groin and a foot gave up on me, but we were delighted to get behind a cause like this and we wish Thomas and Shirley, his grandma who is spearheading the fund-raising, all the luck in the world.”

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Club Cash

AS you all know from your own experiences these are tough times for everybody, but we believe you will agree that OLDHAM RLFC is taking massive inspiration from the fabulous NHS and other key workers in tackling Covid head-on, while looking forward positively to the 2021 season and better times ahead thanks to the outstanding work now being done to get people vaccinated as quickly as possible.

Nevertheless, we have to face facts and be realistic enough to accept that the club urgently needs every pound that is currently coming in from whatever source. One of those sources is our Club Cash lottery and we would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who support us on this. A lot of you who used to pay our collectors on the doorstep have responded to our suggestions on how to pay by different methods and we are extremely grateful for that. Thanks again. You will never know how much difference your contributions make.

Alas, our income from the lottery has dropped by more than 50 per cent over the course of the pandemic and that would be a huge blow financially at any time let alone a time of unprecedented hardship because of the pandemic. It really is a situation we seriously need to address.

With that in mind the prize fund for the duration of the latest national lockdown will be temporarily reduced from February 10.

You will still be able to win a £1,000 first prize, plus £100, £50, £25 and ten £10 prizes every week, while continuing to provide vital support for the club and it will only cost you £1 a week. You can’t get a decent coffee for that, but the difference it makes to the club when multiplied a few times over and then multiplied again by 52 – the number of weeks in the financial year – is of major significance.

If you can help us at all — for £1 a week — it would be hugely appreciated by everyone with Oldham RL Club at heart. The prize structure still represents good value for money for an outlay of £1.

To those who are already members and help us accordingly, we very much hope to retain your support at this extremely difficult time.

Should you wish to play but don’t, due to the pausing of cash collection rounds, we have other options available, which you can discuss with our lottery administrator, John McAndrew on 07980129541 or from the club on 07904 898177.

Alternatively, you can send an email to: mcandrewj@aol.com or to: enquiries@roughyeds.co.uk

The prize fund will be increased back to previous levels as soon as latest lockdowns are released. Please watch our website and social media platforms for further announcements.

Finally, if you want more information about the lottery or you wish to discuss your membership please contact one of the numbers given above.

A huge thank-you to you all.

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