VIP treatment at Banbury United FC for dying mum's boys

Harry and Joey Kyme (front) with family members and representatives from Banbury United Football Club on the pitch at half time
Harry and Joey Kyme (front) with family members and representatives from Banbury United Football Club on the pitch at half time

Banbury United Football Club gave two boys a day they will never forget and contributed to their dying mum's appeal which has captured the nation's heart.

Joey and Harry Kyme were given the VIP treatment at the Puritans' game against St Neots Town Football Club on Saturday (November 18).

Their mother Sam has an aggressive form of motor neurone disease and a fundraising appeal so her sons could be legally raised by her sister in Australia raised more than £37,000 last week.

Officials at the football club saw the campaign and decided to do their bit by inviting the family to the match and a bucket collection raised £600 for the fund.

Banbury United commercial director Mark Allitt said: "We are a football club that's owned by the people of Banbury so it's important we do get involved and be more than just a club by making sure we support things like this.

"All the feedback I've had from the family was great and they said the lads were still buzzing on Sunday.

"Considering their mum is so poorly the way the boys conducted themselves and the whole family, they were a credit to each other and they were marvellous.

"They really were a special pair of boys and a lovely family who showed such strength and dignity and were a pleasure to host."

The Kyme family met the players, manager and referee in the dressing room before enjoying a meal courtesy of the club.

They got signed footballs and programmes from the players and the club gave them a Banbury United tracksuit top, scarf and hat.

Goalkeeper Jack Harding signed his gloves and gave them to Harry, eight, and Joey, 12, while defender Charlie Wise gave them his signed boots.

Club sponsors Banbury Golf Club donated a free game of Footgolf to the boys as well.

Single-mum Sam, 34, is receiving end of life care and was desperate to raise money to pay legal fees to ensure a future for her sons.

A £15,000 target was hit in three days and the total was soon at £30,000, with it currently at more than £37,000 as the country got behind the appeal.

People across Banbury have been organising raffles and other fundraising events for the family.

The money will be spent on ensuring Sam's sister Pippa Hughes can look after the boys in Australia, as well as paying for flights, school and other costs.

To donate, visit