Tickets For Troops, has distributed 300,000 FREE ticket
just days after the scheme marked its third anniversary, it was
announced today (Friday , 23rd November).
Since it was launched in 2009 Tickets For Troops has been
providing FREE tickets to service personnel for top events across
the UK including The Brit Awards, James Bond's
Skyfall Premier, FA Cup Finals, England Internationals
at Wembley, The Diamond Jubilee Concert at Buckingham Palace
and the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Other organisations supporting the charity by donating tickets
include The Premier League, The Football League, The
British Horseracing Authority, The PGA, Premiership
Rugby, the LTA and British Tennis and the Rugby Football League.
Many West End theatres and individual performers such as Rod
Stewart, Sir Elton John and comedians John Bishop and Michael
McIntyre have also given thousands of tickets.
Ross Barden, Director of Operations atTickets For Troops,
said: 'We are delighted to have reached this magnificent milestone
in such a short period of time. On behalf of everyone at Tickets
For Troops I must thank all the organisations, clubs, venues and
individuals that have got behind the charity and supported the men
and women of our Armed Forces with such generosity and pride, this
achievement would not have been possible without you.'
Private Tom Harding of 3rd Battalion the
Parachute Regiment and a lifelong Chelsea fan was allocated the
300.000th milestone ticket for Chelsea v Manchester City
at Stamford Bridge this Sunday.
As part of the celebrations Pte Harding was invited by Chelsea
FC to meet club Captain John Terry at their Cobham training ground
in Surrey. Terry presented Pte Harding with the 300,000 ticket
for the weekend's game which includes access for him and a guest to
the Executive Lounge at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea FC was a founder supporter ofTickets For
Troopsand have donated 50 tickets for every home fixture since the
charity was set up in 2009.
Pte Harding, completed Op HERRICK 13 as an Light Machine Gunner
and since then has returned to the UK and has been on the Airborne
Task Force (ABTF) for the past 18 months. He also plays football
for the Battalion, Infantry and Army U23 football team.
He said: 'I can't believe it. I've been a Chelsea fan all my
life but often find it difficult to attend games because of the
nature of my job. I never expected in a million years that I would
get to meet the captain at the training ground, let alone in the
same week have the opportunity and privilege to watch Chelsea take
on Manchester City from the Stamford Bridge Executive Lounge.
'I can't thank Tickets For Troops and Chelsea enough for
this once in a lifetime opportunity. Tickets For Troops does
such a fantastic job in keeping spirits high amongst the all the
Armed Forces and I hope they can continue to operate for many years
Chelsea Captain, John Terry, who is a Tickets For Troops Patron
said: 'it's an honour to have met Tom and I'm delighted to
have been able to present him with the 300,000th ticket
on behalf of Tickets for Troops. Tom and his colleagues in the
forces are real heroes and I and everyone at the club have nothing
but respect for the sacrifices they make on behalf of our
country. It is wonderful that so many organisations have
supported this incredible scheme and such
a substantial number of tickets have been donated.'
Chelsea Chairman Bruce Buck is also a patron of the charity and
welcomed the landmark: 'Chelsea Football Club has been a proud
supporter of Tickets for Troops since its formation in 2009. To
have given away 300,000 tickets to members of the Armed
Forces is a phenomenal achievement and underlines the great
respect the Armed Services have within the entertainment and sports
industries and among the general public.
' It is extremely fitting that the 300,000th ticket
will go to Private Tom Harding for Chelsea's game against
Manchester City this weekend and we are honoured that as part of
the initiative 50 troops enjoy the opportunity to watch Chelsea at
every one of our home games. It is our privilege to host them at
Tickets For Troops Chairman
Lord Marland said: "It is constantly humbling to see
the waves of organisations generously supporting Tickets For Troops
and ultimately showing their appreciation to the servicemen and
women who work so tirelessly to protect our freedom. We have seen
first-hand what these tickets mean to troops and it is clear that
Tickets For Troops is making a huge difference in boosting moral.
It is a pleasure and an honour to be able to help reward these
extraordinary, courageous and brave people for all their hard work