Wallsend Boys’ Club have launched an appeal  to fund a new youth facility, with support from Sting and the Cast of his Broadway musical ‘The Last Ship’.

Wallsend Boys’ Club launched the appeal with the announcement of a US $10,000 donation raised by Sting and the cast of his Broadway show, ‘The Last Ship’, through the annual Broadway Cares fundraiser in New York City.

‘The Last Ship’ tells a universal story drawn from Sting’s own childhood experiences growing up beside the Swan Hunter Shipyard in Wallsend. Wallsend Boys’ Club was itself founded by the directors of the Swan Hunter shipyard at the turn of the last century, with the objective of providing a facility where young Swan Hunter apprentices could channel their leisure time energies into positive social and sporting activities. Diverse activities ranged from football to pantomime and from badminton to judo, whilst for many young people in the area the Club was simply somewhere to meet up with friends.

Since 1965 the Club delivered these activities from premises on Station Road in Wallsend, but strong winds blew down one of the walls in 2012 and the building had to be condemned for safety reasons. Since then the youth activities have been severely curtailed and the Club wants to re-instate a new Youth Club facility at the same site where their representative teams play their football matches at Bigges Main, in Wallsend.

This ambitious project will require at least £1 million to achieve. The Club already has £250,000 in reserves from selling the unexpired lease at Station Road back to North Tyneside Council. The appeal to replace the Station Road premises, 50 years after they opened, needs to raise a further £750,000.

Steve Dale, Chairman of Wallsend Boys’ Club, said,

“I couldn’t have imagined a better way to launch our appeal than to have one of Wallsend’s most famous sons backing our efforts.

“I believe Sting played in the 5-a-side leagues at Station Road when he was younger, so he knows first-hand how many young people have had the benefit of a dedicated place to go and meet their friends outside of school time.

“We want the next facility to be that dedicated place to go for future generations of Tyneside’s youngsters.”

To follow the progress of the Appeal and make a donation in support of this important community project, visit www.spacehive.com/wallsendboysclub