Community turns out to support Roman’s wish list

MORE than £4,000 was raised at a fun day held to fund the “bucket list” of a boy who is losing his sight and a charity that supports people with his condition.

Fun for all on the inflatable slide

The organisers were delighted with the attendance of between 200 and 300 people for the event on Sunday at Knaphill Football Club’s ground.

It was held to support the ambitions of nine-year-old Roman Bellairs and the research work of Retina UK.

Roman with his delighted mum Billie

Roman’s mum, Billie, said the takings were still being counted but easily exceeded the targeted amount.

“It was a really amazing day and we had such a good turnout,” she said. “There were so many people there having a good time and the weather was perfect.

“We are really grateful to everyone who came along to support the fun day, and to the News & Mail readers who sent donations to our fundraising appeal.”

The day was organised by Roman’s uncle Paul Davey and his friend Kevin Ayres. Billie’s father Pat, landlord of the Royal Marine pub at Lyne, helped get together teams for a football tournament, with regulars and Pat’s family members in the line-ups.

Funfair-style games, bouncy castles, musical entertainment, a barbecue, a raffle and an auction of donated items were also on the attractions list for the day.

The standout lot in the auction was a Chelsea FC shirt signed by the club captain, Cesar Azpilicueta, which sold for £510. A football signed by first team members made £120.

Another lot from the football world was a painting of Crystal Palace FC star Wilfried Zahar, which was bought for £30.

A little “tiger” watching the football tournament

Billie was also pleased with the interest shown in Roman and his incurable eye disease, dominant retinitis pigmentosa.

“We had a lot of conversations with people about what is going to happen to Roman and people were curious about him and his condition.”

Roman is predicted to lose his sight by his twenties, or earlier. He has compiled a list of what he would like to experience and money from the fun day will go towards helping him achieve his ambitions.

They include swimming with dolphins, being lowered in a cage to get close to a great white shark, meeting TV celebrities Ant and Dec, cooking over a campfire and paddleboarding.

His family are seeking to raise £15,000 to help pay for Roman’s adventures. Donations can be made via www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/rp-through-romans-eyes

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