At a time when there is a general malaise around our club both on and off the pitch, it was lovely to forget all the negatives and uncertainty and spend a day doing something truly worthwhile.

Blues Trust were honoured to be asked to support the clubs ‘Blues Give a Gift’ scheme – involving a hell of a lot present wrapping – which Birmingham City players will be taking to the Birmingham Childrens and Heartlands hospitals to present to patients.

Humbling and overwhelming as it was to see the sheer volume of fans in attendance and all willing to give up their day for such a great cause, it once again proved why Blues fans are without doubt are the best in the country.

Trust representatives Dave Farrell and Phil Brown were joined by two Trust members – Michelle Pimm and Darren Thompson – both of whom were chosen from a large number of Trust members who had volunteered to support the day.

With an early start scheduled, the daunting and monumental task of wrapping hundreds of presents did not deter any of the volunteers reporting for duty, and, just like on the football field, tactics proved to be vital.

And although the decision to go for the perfectly square table football games seemed, in the first instance, like a good idea, it wasn’t before long that the wrapping honeymoon period was over when it was revealed that there was a slight twist – mini footballs – which made a somewhat easy task almost as difficult as they come.

Volunteers were also joined by Blues boss Lee Clark alongside Paul Robinson and Wade Elliott, all of whom arrived to delve into a bit of festive wrapping of their own; despite adamant protestations from Wade Elliott whose paper wrapping skills deserved far more credit than he certainly gave himself.

But it must not be forgotten that none of this would have taken place had it not been arranged by the club itself. What had clearly taken a huge amount of time and effort to prepare once again proved to be a triumph.

The hard work, time and effort put in by volunteers will no doubt leave children at the Birmingham Childrens and Heartlands hospitals with massive smiles on their faces, but the ultimate satisfaction will forever remain being able to facilitate in the ground work that made it all happen.

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