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Aristocratic glamour for Exeter charity

(left to right) The Earl and Countess of Devon with City Community Trust chair Julian Tagg and manager Jamie Vittles

The Devons become patrons

The Earl and Countess of Devon are the new patrons of a charity linked to Exeter City Football Club.

The City Community Trust delivers mental and physical health and wellbeing activity to people of all ages and abilities across Devon. It's a key partner with Exeter City Council on the Exeter Community Wellbeing initiative that is now collecting and delivering shopping, prescriptions and emergency food parcels for isolated and vulnerable people across the city.

The Earl and Countess of Devon, Charlie and AJ Courtenay, live with their two children at the 600-year-old Powderham Castle. They chose Exeter City Community Trust as one of Powderham’s ‘Charities of the Year’ last year, culminating in a fundraising dinner in aid of the charity at the castle. After getting to know the charity and all the great programmes it runs, Charlie and AJ were so impressed by the range and reach of its activities that they agreed to become patrons.

AJ said: "We came to know the dedicated team and the excellent work of Exeter City Community Trust when they were our Charity of the Year. Supporting local community wellbeing organisations is very important to us and Exeter City Community Trust has values complimentary to our own, using community activity to support mental and physical wellbeing.

"Over the last few weeks, we have witnessed first-hand how the charity has adapted its work to support the most vulnerable in our community during the coronavirus lockdown. We are honoured to be invited to act as patrons and look forward to raising awareness of the charity’s work at this crucial time."

Julian Tagg, chair of Exeter City Community Trust, said: "We are delighted to welcome the Earl and Countess as patrons of our charity. They were extremely generous in allowing us to host a charity fundraising dinner at Powderham Castle last year and it has been a pleasure to get to know them both and introduce them to work of Exeter City Community Trust. We look forward to working with them."

Like other charities, the organisation has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, with the majority of its income-generating activities forced to stop. Next weekend it is holding a virtual 5k race to help raise funds to continue delivering its work now and in the future. Sign ups include the Earl and Countess, ECFC First team manager Matt Taylor, members of the ECFC first team squad and a group of staff and prisoners from HMP Exeter.

Mr Tagg added: ‘As with so many organisations we have been hit hard by coronavirus pandemic. We are asking people to support our work, this will help us help other people right now, and also ensure we are there for our community when we emerge from this crisis.’

 To enter Take 5, the virtual 5k race, visit https://exetercct.org/take5/

For more information about the work of the charity visit www.exetercct.org

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