Northern Rock has kindly donated its giant ‘Sign the Stripes’ Newcastle United football shirt to the Newcastle United Supporters’ Trust (NUST). The Trust is auctioning the giant shirt – which is signed by thousands of ‘Toon’ fans from all over the world – to raise money to help with the launch and development of the Junior branch of the Trust – JUSTNewcastle.
The giant shirt made its first appearance at the Boxing Day fixture at St James’ Park, where it was passed through the East Stand crowd just before the game. It has also appeared on the centre spot at a number of other Newcastle United matches prior to kick off.
At a special event held on Monday 21st February 2011 at Northern Rock’s head office in Gosforth, Andy Tate, Customer and Commercial Director at Northern Rock, handed over the 10m x 15m shirt to NUST Chair, Norman Watson.
Norman Watson, Chair NUST said: “This is a very generous donation from Northern Rock and will be used by the Trust to help support their work in setting up and running the Junior Supporters’ Trust. The establishment of a junior branch – which will be free to join for under 17s – demonstrates NUST’s commitment to encouraging young people to support their club and to help ensure there is a next generation of Newcastle United fans.
“We’re sure that bidders for the shirt will recognise this as a great chance to own a unique piece of Newcastle United’s history, whilst at the same time providing funds for such a worthy cause.”
It is hoped that the money raised by the NUST for JUSTNewcastle from the shirt sale will make the Junior Trust a reality by providing starter packs, finance football tournaments and education for younger supporters about the great history of both the football club and the city.
The cost of watching live football, coupled with easy access to televised football now means that youngsters no longer automatically support their local team. Indeed club loyalties are weakest among the young. A junior branch of NUST will help cement the support of current young fans and attract new young fans by encouraging youngsters in the region to make Newcastle United their team of choice.
Building an affinity for the local football club at an early age, can have wide ranging benefits for youngsters and the Club, as well as increasing a sense of pride for the local community. Through the fully inclusive JUSTNewcastle, the NUST can unlock this potential support of young fans and implant in them the good values needed to be Newcastle United supporters.
Andy Tate, Customer and Commercial Director of Northern Rock said: “We thought it fitting that the giant shirt, emblazoned with the names of thousands of supporters, should go to an organisation that aims to nurture the next generation of fans, to enable them to launch and develop this very worthwhile Junior Trust.”
Welcome to the NUST Shirt Auction.
NUST is auctioning the giant shirt by means of closed bids through email. Businesses and individuals have the opportunity to bid on this unique piece of Newcastle United’s history, whilst at the same time providing funds for such a worthy cause.
Good luck with your bid!