With just under one month to go until brave Bathonians spend the night at the Rec for a good cause, the Rec Sleep Out charity challenge has been backed by a Bath rugby hero.

Former Bath Rugby, England and British Lions hooker Lee Mears has agreed to take part in the Bath Rugby Foundation fundraiser and agreed to sleep at the pitch he used to run out on in the famous Blue, Black and White.

Bath Rugby Foundation is holding the Rec Sleep Out on November 7 to mark the charity’s 15th birthday and to help tackle the issue of youth homelessness.

Money raised will go the Foundation to support the charity’s work with young people at risk and to homelessness charity, Julian House.

Lee, who won 42 caps for England and is now a trustee of Bath Rugby Foundation, said: “This is an issue that affects far too many young people.

"Young people should be given hope, they should be given opportunity and they should know that they have a safe and stable place to spend the night.

“Spending the night at the Rec is the least we can all do. Feeling cold and sleeping rough overnight will be pretty miserable for us all – but that’s the point.

“I hope that a lot of Bath Rugby fans will sign up to join us and I know we can all raise a lot of money to help tackle an issue that should exist in Bath in 2018.”

Bath Rugby CEO, Tarquin McDonald, has already signed up to take part in the Rec Sleep Out

Bath Rugby Foundation works with more than 2,500 children and young people annually and staff are increasingly aware that more and more of the participants on the charity’s programmes do not have the security of a permanent home and find themselves sofa-surfing or moving between different types of temporary accommodation.

Sadly, some young people are also hungry when they arrive at the charity.

Bath Rugby Foundation Chief Executive, Lynne Fernquest, said: “As the nights are drawing in and the temperature is dropping, homelessness is an issue that will be in many Bathonians’ minds.

“It is always distressing to hear from our Foundations coaches that they have been working with a young person who does not have a secure place to spend the night.

“Our objective is to raise awareness of the challenges that vulnerable young people in our community face, while raising much-needed funds for Bath Rugby Foundation and Julian House.

Sign up to take part in the Rec Sleep Out at https://ssl.cow-parsley.co.uk/brf/

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