Robson still helping out Ipswich
FOOTBALL legend Bobby Robson has showed he still has a soft spot for Suffolk by donating hundreds of pounds to a cancer charity in the county.The manager of Newcastle United, who saw Town through a glorious decade of footballing triumphs in the seventies, has also put his name to a new appeal raising funds for Ipswich Hospital.
By Tina Heath
FOOTBALL legend Bobby Robson has showed he still has a soft spot for Suffolk by donating hundreds of pounds to a cancer charity in the county.
The manager of Newcastle United, who saw Town through a glorious decade of footballing triumphs in the seventies, has also put his name to a new appeal raising funds for Ipswich Hospital.
The Bobby Robson Jubilee Appeal, due to be launched by the League of Friends later this month, is targeted at raising £55,000 to buy new equipment for consultant Huw Davies, who Robson credits with saving his life by diagnosing him with cancer in 1995.
Robson, who The Evening Star is championing for a Knighthood, was presented with £1,000 for the charity of his choice when he opened a luxury health club in Newcastle upon Tyne.
He decided to divide the cash between three beneficiaries – Hamilton Lodge in Great Bromley near Colchester got £500, Ipswich Hospital's fundraising and support arm, the League of Friends, received £250 with the remaining £250 going to the Imperial Cancer Fund.
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Jane Symes of the League said that volunteers were delighted with the kick-start to the appeal, which hopes to fund a special double headed microscope that Mr Davies will use for reconstructive oral surgery.
"We are extremely grateful for the first donation and we will endeavour to raise the funds for the equipment as quickly as we can."
She revealed that Robson, whose life size bronze statue is set to be unveiled in Portman Road at the beginning of July, had also agreed to become patron of the League.
Trustees at Hamilton Lodge, a residential home for elderly people with learning difficulties, told how Robson had kept a close affiliation since his days as Ipswich Town manager.
A spokesman for the Ipswich legend said: "He is always happy to help charities he feels close to."
Robson, who still has a house in East Anglia, was heading Portuguese champions Porto when Mr Davies broke the news that he was suffering from a rare form of cancer which would spread unless removed.
He was told that if he did not have an operation to remove a malignant melanoma on his face immediately he would not see the season out.
Writing about the successful operation in his autobiography An Englishman Abroad, he said: "My brush with death had, if anything made me appreciate even more what I had.
"The game still enraptured me and I couldn't imagine a life without it."
N The League of Friends is always looking for volunteers. If you would like to help contact Jane Symes on 01473 702168.