TWO town rugby teams will go head to head for their annual Boxing Day match - but this year the tie will have a charity twist.
Hartlepool Rovers Rugby Club and West Hartlepool Rugby Club go up against each other every year as part of a festive tradition.
Players on both sides have a year’s worth of bragging rights at stake in the match, as well as enjoying the chance to rekindle old rivalries.
But this year they will also be helping to raise funds for Hartlepool & District Hospice.
The hospice’s volunteers will be at the gate, at West View Road, in the hope of receiving donations and will also carry collection buckets throughout the game.
Tony Cooper, secretary for Hartlepool Rovers Rugby Club, said: “Hartlepool & District Hospice does amazing work for our community and anyone who has experience of what the hospice has to offer will tell you that they helped immeasurably.
“Rovers are proud to support the hospice and we hope that spectators will dig deep and show their generosity.
“Whatever Boxing Day means to people, please share a thought for families who are not having such a good time, illness doesn’t care if it is Christmas.”
Janice Forbes, community fundraiser at the Wells Avenue-based hospice, added: “We are delighted that Rovers have invited us along and we are looking forward to the traditional Boxing Day match and collecting much-needed funds for our hospice.
“I am looking forward to a good turn out.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for us and everything we collect will be used to fund our specialist patient care.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy Christmas on behalf of all of the hospice.”