Last hurdle for Vicky Hall memorial

EVERYONE in murdered teenager Vicky Hall's home village has their fingers firmly crossed today – waiting to see if her memorial clears its final hurdle.

By Richard Cornwell

EVERYONE in murdered teenager Vicky Hall's home village has their fingers firmly crossed today – waiting to see if her memorial clears its final hurdle.

It was a big day for the appeal as the application to the Football Foundation, which is being asked to provide huge grant towards the longed-for project¸ was sent on its way.

After months of work, the bundle of documents was finally posted by recorded delivery to the foundation's London headquarters.

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Now everyone will be on tenterhooks to see if the bid for £140,000 for a sports pavilion at Trimley St Mary to bear Vicky's name is approved.

"It's been an enormous amount of work to prepare the application – far more than we ever imagined," said Bob Race, chairman of Trimley Red Devils football club, which will manage the pavilion when it is built.

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"Every time we thought we had finished putting the information together, there seemed to be another form to fill in or another report to write.

"But we wanted to make sure that it was the best possible application we could submit with the fullest information.

"The foundation told us that was the best way to do it and perfect applications can be decided very quickly.

"We have worked very closely with the foundation and had meetings with their officers and those of the Suffolk FA.

"We now have to wait and see what the foundation's response will be though we are confident our application meets the criteria for the grant and we are hoping for good news in the New Year.

"This project is desperately needed by Trimley, especially for its young people, and will be an appropriate and excellent memorial to Vicky, whose death deeply shocked our community and is still being felt."

The memorial appeal – spearheaded by the Evening Star – has so far raised more than £80,000, thanks to grants from local councils, donations from businesses and the fantastic fundraising efforts of local people and groups.

The pavilion will be constructed on the Stennetts Memorial Playing Field. The Red Devils, which run football teams for players aged seven to 17, will manage it, but it will also be used by cricketers and for small community events.

Funding applications on average take 20 weeks to decide because most need some extra work after they have been submitted, but a perfect one can take as little as nine weeks to be processed.

Vicky's parents Graham and Lorinda have been delighted with the way the fundraising has been going and the tremendous support the memorial fund has received from the public.

It has been a great comfort to them since their 17-year-old daughter vanished as she walked home with best friend Gemma Algar from a Felixstowe nightclub more than two years ago.


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