Anyone watching Peterborough United enter the pitch shortly before 3pm on Saturday will notice something unusual.
Instead of having a young fan join the players onto the turf for kick-off, Posh will be led out by 54-year-old Ian Gow from Oundle who will be the official team mascot for the day.
Ian will walk out in front of thousands of fans and take part in the team warm up ahead of Posh’s clash with Lincoln City in support of Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall, the hospice based in Longthorpe.
“I am going to be a mascot for Peterborough United at the age of 54 - this is usually something done by children!” said Ian.
“I know this is going to be very embarrassing for me, but it is 100 per cent worth it.
“Sue Ryder has helped friends of mine and every one of them could not say enough good things. Sue Ryder does amazing work.”
Ian has so far raised more than £2,500 for Thorpe Hall and is aiming to raise more.
It is the second time Ian has supported the hospice too; two years ago he ran the Great Eastern Run which is taking place this Sunday in the city.
“I hope my support will be able to pay for something that will benefit the families the hospice cares for,” he added. “Thank you to everyone who sponsored me.”
Nilesh Patel is senior community fundraiser at Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice and a season ticket holder at Posh. He will be supporting Ian as he steps out on the pitch on Saturday.
Nilesh said, “Fair play to Ian for putting himself up to be team mascot for the day. I am sure he will raise a few laughs as well as raising vital funds so we can be there for local families when it matters.
“We hope Posh fans will dig deep and support Ian in his football fundraising venture. Huge thanks to Peterborough United too for having him and supporting our hospice too!”
You can support Ian on JustGiving at: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ian-gow3.
For more information on Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice visit www.sueryder.org/thorpehall.