Billy’s Wish, Macmillan and UK3Lions joined forces on Sunday to raise awareness of knife crime in memory of Billy Dove.
The second annual Billy’s Wish Family Fun Day and Football Fever event at Leverstock Green FC’s Pancake Lane was hosted by Billy’s Wish – the anti knife crime charity set up by Paul Dove in the memory of his son, who was killed in Hemel Hempstead in November 2011.
Paul said: “I cannot thank the people of Hemel Hempstead enough for their on-going strong support, for helping me and my family help stamp out knife crime, in memory of my dearly loved son Billy.
“To everyone who donated, took part, helped or spectated, thank you so much for supporting Billy’s Wish, you’re truly amazing.”
Entertainment on the day included demonstrations from Bury Judo, Streetwise, Tiffany Vineyard School of Performing Arts, WingTsun Marital Arts, Hemel Boxing Club, Game On Football, Camelot Rugby Club, Youth Connections and many more.
The day started with a speech from Karen Attwood who was representing Macmillan Life Climb.
Then Street Pastors’ Andy Hardy – who also works for the Metropolitan Police in London – delivered a message spelling out the consequences of knife crime.
A number of young people signed the MAMAA and Billy’s Wish Anti Weapon Pledge as a result of the speeches.
The highlight of the day was a football match between Doves United and the UK3Lions – a football team made up of musicians and other celebrities whose prime goal is raising money by playing charity matches and hosting concerts.
The Lions team featured well-known faces including East 17 star Terry Coldwell, TV presenter Rob Lamarr and Streets singer Leo the Lion.
Managed by Paul Dove, Doves United kept up their winning streak with a 12-1 victory, with former Ipswich United player Fabian Wilnis named man of the match for the Lions and Jamie Davidge picking up the award for United.
After the presentation of the Billy Dove Memorial Football Cup, nine-year-old Britain’s Got Talent finalist Arisxandra sang Whitney Houston classic I Will Always Love You in dedication to Billy from his friends and family.
Following their exertions on the football pitch, the UK3Lions put on a concert and were joined by some of the Doves United players on stage in what was a fitting climax to the event.