Burnley football coaching duo step in to 'save' Christmas for family who faced putting festive season on hold

The people of Burnley got behind Mark Clark (right) and Gareth Singleton to raise enough cash to save Christmas for a strugglng single mum and her two children.
The people of Burnley got behind Mark Clark (right) and Gareth Singleton to raise enough cash to save Christmas for a strugglng single mum and her two children.

Meet Mark Clark and Gareth Singleton...two friends who 'saved' Christmas, literally, for a struggling Burnley single mum-of-two who was preparing to put the festive season on hold.

The pair were so touched when they heard that the family were facing a very bleak time ahead, with no presents or celebrations, they decided to do something to help.

They set up a fund raising page on social media and within just 24 hours had smashed their £500 target.

GoFundMe, the funding platform they used, even reached out to them to say how touching the whole campaign had been and how well everyone in Burnley had done to smash the target so quickly.

Mark, who is 42 and lives in Burnley with his wife Kelly and their children Josh (11) and 19-year-old Lauren, said: "This mum has had a terrible year and the reality for her was putting Christmas on hold, the situation was that bad.

"The generosity that people have shown has been tremendous and we cannot express how thankful both us and the family are for the support and donations.

"This is a perfect example of what Christmas means, people pulling together even if times may be hard for them, to help someone who is really struggling."

The pair, who coach grassroots football together in Burnley, used some of the cash to buy presents for the two children after they managed to get them to each write a wish list to Father Christmas.

Mark (42) who works as Sales Account Manager at Kelbrook based GetCarFinanceHere.com said: " I think we managed to get what they wanted.

"The rest of the money went on a Christmas food hamper and vouchers so the family can enjoy a really good Christmas.

"We know that this can't make the problems go away or solve them but at least they can take a break from them over the festive period and face the New Year ahead."

The pair have now decided to continue with the campaign into the New Year to raise money for foodbanks in Burnley and the surrounding areas.

Businessman Gareth (39) who runs his own company, Singleton Engineering Solutions, and lives with his wife Emma and their two children, Max and Louie, said: "These donations can really make a difference to so many people so we hope the community will continue to support us."