PLAYERS from Barnsley FC have visited some of the town’s poorliest people to deliver presents and spread some festive cheer.

The entire squad, along with head coach Paul Heckingbottom, stopped by Barnsley Hospice and Barnsley Hospital to chat with staff and patients.

There was a touching moment at the hospice when Hecky chatted with 92-year-old Hazel Peat, a lifelong Reds’ fan. She warned the boss not to be getting any ideas about moving to another club, telling him: “You stay with us.”

The visit was defender Liam Lindsay’s first to the hospice. He said: “We’ve all really enjoyed the visit. The Barnsley community has been really welcoming since I joined the team in May so it feels good to give something back.”

The team also presented a cheque for just under £600, which was raised by Barnsley FC and Reds in the Community staff taking part in the Barnsley 10k.

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Sam Silverwood, the hospice’s fundraising manager, said: “It was an absolute pleasure to welcome the team to the hospice and we’re really grateful that so many of them gave up their time. The boys raised a lot of smiles, and we feel very lucky to have such a good relationship with the club.”

The players then visited youngsters at Barnsley Hospital, with Paul Heckingbottom and players Angus MacDonald, Adam Hammill, Adam Davies, Joe Williams, Adam Jackson and George Moncur handing out toys and gifts.

Heckingbottom, who was born in Royston, said: "It’s truly a privilege, as this is one of the visits that we feel passionate about and look forward to making each year.

"It puts a lot of things into perspective when you visit, and shows just how fortunate we are to be able to enjoy this Christmas with our families. Some of the children will be in hospital over the Christmas period, which is a huge strain for them and their parents, but hopefully by popping in with these gifts we’ve been able to put a smile on their faces .

“As a club we’re really proud of the connection that we have with our community, and its days like today that hopefully show we are more than just a football club.”

Lisa Calvert, of Barnsley Hospital Charity, said: “It was lovely to welcome the lads, we appreciated them taking time out at a busy time of year and to show their faces to some of the kids they’re heroes to some of them. We were really grateful for gifts as being in hospital over Christmas isn’t easy and does bring a smile to their faces in the festive season.”