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25 Jun 2022

Olly Wilkes Memorial Football Tournament 2022

When is this event::

Date: June 25
9:00 am - 5:00 pm


Thorns Collegiate Academy
Stockwell Avenue, Quarry Bank
Brierley Hill, DY5 2NU United Kingdom
+ Google Map

Simon Wilkes and his family and friends are planning a further fundraising event, in memory of Olly Wilkes, who very sadly passed away in tragic circumstances in 2017.

Simon is an MDS patient himself and has supported MDS UK for many years:


Read more about his own patient experience here:


He and his family are also fervent supporters of Anthony Nolan, organising stem cell donor recruitment drives in their local area, using his network as a football coach.

On one of these events, Olly’s friend Sam Astley registered, and was later requested to donate his stem cells, on the exact day he had tickets to watch England in the football semi-final!

Sam chose to do the right thing – and spent the day at hospital, donating those precious stem cells that would save the life of a blood cancer patient – instead of attending the football game.

You may have seen the amazing media coverage generated by his generous decision.

Watch here: https://mdspatientsupport.org.uk/he-shoots-he-scores-he-saves-a-life-hero-england-fan/

Most national newspapers and TV stations covered this news item.

But local newspaper Stourbridge News was the first – thanks to very supportive journalist Bev Holder:


Sam was the 2nd of Olly's friends who had donated stem cells at events organised by "The Wilkes Family" after Matt Beveridge donated back in 2018, saving a young ladies life in Spain. Matts story was also covered by the Stourbridge News & is included in this article


Simon and Sam have since been interviewed further by ITV, as news came through that the blood cancer patient is doing very well, after the crucial first 100 days post-transplant.

Simon, proudly wearing his MDS UK T-shirt, and being hailed a hero by Sam – something we fully agree with!

Driven by the need to raise awareness of MDS, and stem cell donations, Simon, along with family and friends & their beloved "Withymoor Colts Family" keep organising events such as this one.

The upcoming event is very special though and a further legacy to their son Olly in heaven.

Due to COVID, the event was postponed several times – but will finally go ahead on 25th June 2022.

Simon and the committee organising this special event are looking for anyone able to support it with gifts for the Grand Raffle, Memorabilia Auction, tombola or any other ways to assist.

We thank Ikuto Group Ltd to start for their sponsor!


Any enquiries - please contact Simon via MDS UK, or direct on simonwilkes27@blueyonder.co.uk

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