Rosy cheeks of a different kind in boxer shorts run in memory of hit-and-run teen

There were rosy cheeks of a different kind as a community came together for a major fundraiser with a difference.

Runners taking part in the Boxing Day boxer shorts run
Runners taking part in the Boxing Day boxer shorts run

While most of us were still getting over the Christmas Day excess a group of hardy individuals were braving the elements in the truest sense as they set about raising money in memory of Dylan Price.

Led by members of Bishop's Castle and Onny Valley Rugby Football Club and joined by others from local sports clubs and the community, a group of intrepid runners stripped down to their underwear and took part in a bracing Boxing Day lap of Bishop's Castle.

More than 100 people lined Church Street outside the King's Head for the start of the run, with huge cheers as the group of men and women set off in proper boxing day cold – conditions only really suited to a hat, coat and gloves.

The run was raising money for the Dylan Price Foundation, which was set up in memory of the the 17-year-old who played rugby for Shrewsbury and Bishop's Castle.

Dylan was killed in a suspected hit-and-run in the early hours of September 19 last year, the day before his 18th birthday. The case has still not been solved.

Dylan Price died the day before his 18th birthday

Dylan's sisters, Izzy and Livvy were amongst the crowd cheering the runners on, while his father Darren also completed the lap in his 'budgie smugglers' to a massive cheer from the huge crowd gathered outside the pub.

As part of the event people were donating to a bucket collection, while Tom Gee, captain of Bishop's Castle and Onny Valley was joined by Matt Watkins in getting his head shaved before setting off on the run.

'Shaved', might actually be too generous with Lee White, landlord of the King's Head taking the honours on the start line – shaving a 'racing stripe' down the centre of the 23-year-old captain's head.

Rugby Club skipper Tom Gee gets his head shaved by King's Head landlord Lee White ahead of the run

The run took place for the first time last year, and looks set to become a tradition in the town.

Mr Gee said they had wanted to do what they could to put a smile on people's faces, while raising money for a good cause.

He said: "Last year we started it and it is something Dylan would have put his hand up first to be a part of – 'I'll do it, in my budgie smugglers, top off', he would have loved it. And we just wanted to do something that might put a bit of a smile back on his family's faces.

"It is not just the rugby club either we have had people from the football club, the hockey club, the cricket club, from the community who just wanted to do it."

Tom Gee and others after crossing the finish line

Although he managed the lap in good pace, Mr Gee said he had shuddered at the prospect when he woke up this morning.

He said: "I was pretty rough when I woke up, I went outside in my trackies and a top and thought – It is freezing. But, you know you're not going to be cold when you finish!"

Jacko Griffiths was the first runner home 'outstripping' his fellow competitors to arrive back at the pub to massive cheers.

Speaking after the run, Izzy Price, said it was wonderful to see so many people taking part, and even more turning out to cheer them on.

Runners celebrating after finishing the run
Scores of people stripped down to take part in the fundraising run.

She said: "It has been brilliant again, the turnout from the whole community has been fantastic, the boys taking part, the girls taking part it is just amazing.

"It is something to have a laugh about and again raise some money. It is a great way to be able to bring people together in a positive way."

The money raised for the Dylan Price Foundation, will go to a number of causes including support local youngsters in sports, improve facilities in the Bishops Castle area, and for other projects in the community.

A fundraiser has been set up online ahead of the event for any people wishing to support the cause, which can be found at gofundme.com/f/dylan-james-price.

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