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Jeff Astle Foundation: Merry Hill and Bullring shops back joins campaign

Sandwell | News | Published:

A menswear shop is joining a campaign led by the daughter of West Bromwich Albion legend Jeff Astle, raising awareness of the long-term impact of footballers' head injuries.

Dawn Astle is delighted that Luke 1977, which has outlets at Merry Hill in Brierley Hill and the Bullring shopping centre in Birmingham, will be raising money for The Jeff Astle Foundation.

The foundation was set up after a neuro-surgeon determined that her father died of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), otherwise known as boxer's brain.

This has led to extensive research to identify whether his fatal condition was the result of repeatedly heading heavy footballs.

Jeff's widow Laraine, who was at the launch of the Luke 1977 initiative, has also been involved in efforts to stir football authorities into acting on lessons learned from the former England striker's death in 2002 following a decline into dementia.

Throughout the duration of the UEFA Euro 2016 competition, Luke 1977's shops will be taking donations for the foundation from customers.

A raffle will also be held to win canvases of the West Brom striker.

And whenever England score £100 will be donated by each shop to the cause.

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Head of sales at Luke 1977 and Albion fan, Carl Barratt, said. "We get involved with lots of charities, and during the Euros we wanted to do something football related. This is a great campaign and a natural fit. One of our owner's, Debs Poole, is passionate about the cause as her dad also suffered with dementia. We know how much research the foundation is doing into this and we really wanted to help."

Dawn said: "It is incredible and we were taken aback when we heard they wanted to help us.

"We encourage everyone to come into the store and see what's on offer. "

Dawn added that a recent meeting with the FA had also led her to feel more optimistic about the campaign.

"There is still a long way to go, but I left the meeting last week thinking that here is someone we can work with," she said.

For information on the campaign, go to www.thejeffastlefoundation.co.uk

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