HEARTS supporters and players combined to raise in excess of £25,000 at the Hearts Fans Rally yesterday.
More than 400 people, including manager John McGlynn, his backroom staff and most of the first team packed out Tynecastle’s Gorgie Suite for an afternoon of entertainment and fund-raising organised by a group of fans in response to the club’s call to arms a week past Wednesday. Among those who provided their services as speakers, free of charge, were former Grade One referee John Rowbotham and Off The Ball co-host Tam Cowan. The latter revealed he was keen to help out as a result of the sensitive manner Hearts had dealt with staging his beloved Motherwell’s first match following the death of Phil O’Donnell almost five years ago. Cowan is also staging his own one-man stand-up comedy show on 6 December in the Gorgie Suite, with all proceeds going directly to buying Hearts shares.
Most of the income was generated from raffles and auctions, with fans able to bid for a meal in the House of Lords provided by Labour peer and former Hearts chairman George Foulkes, who was also in attendance. Almost every individual item in the auction raised over £500, with some even going for four figures. The McGowan brothers, Dylan and Ryan, were also auctioned round the tables throughout the afternoon.
All proceeds raised will be used to buy club shares in the name of the Hearts Youth Development Committee.