Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Therapy Pool a Hit at Shearer Centre; STRIKER REVEALS BUZZ HE GETS FROM CHARITY

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Therapy Pool a Hit at Shearer Centre; STRIKER REVEALS BUZZ HE GETS FROM CHARITY

Article excerpt

Byline: SIMON MEECHAN Reporter simon.meechan@trinitymirror.com @SimonMeechan_90

FOOTBALL golden boy Alan Shearer has told of his pride in his charity centre as a new pool was opened there.

The PS500,000 pool at the Alan Shearer Centre is twice the size of the suite it has replaced.

It combines interactive mood lighting with water and musical features. The temperature-controlled pool can be used to help build muscle and its mood lighting can calm people with sensory needs.

Three-year-old Jessica Robertson was the first to try out the new suite, which has been fully-funded by the Alan Shearer Foundation.

Shearer, ex-England and Newcastle captain and the Premier League's record goalscorer, said he gets as much, if not more, of a buzz from seeing the difference his free-to-use centre makes as he did from finding the back of the Gallowgate net.

He said: "Scoring a goal is an amazing feeling, but I get more of a feeling when I walk in here and see the enjoyment that it [the centre] gives the kids.

"To do this, here in the North East, where there is nothing else like this, makes it extra special."

The centre, which is part of the St Cuthberts Care charity, opened in 2007 - a year after Shearer hung up his boots.

Almost 10 years on, the fundraising continues.

One of Shearer's aims is to keep the centre free of charge for the people that use it.

The former number nine - who now has a CBE and a statue outside St James' Park - has organised golf days and charity balls to help keep the coffers full.

"We want to continue giving this for free, so we have to raise as much as we can," Shearer said.

"The generosity of so many people helps us give this away for free. I want to continue to do that, because it's very important."

The centre in West Denton has been transformed from a derelict lodge to a state-of-the-art facility. …

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