Charity walk in memory of popular staff member

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Edinburgh-based St Andrews Timber & Building Supplies is organising a sponsored walk in memory of former colleague Stevie Russell, who passed away suddenly at the end of last year.

St Andrews Timber & Building Supplies is organising a sponsored walk in memory of former colleague Stevie Russell, who passed away suddenly at the end of last year.

The father-of-two was a pillar of the community in Polbeth and had been working tirelessly to raise money for the construction of the first 3G football pitch in the West Lothian town.

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Long-time president and coach at Polbeth Community FC, his dream had been to provide a facility which would keep youngsters off the streets and get them involved in sporting activities.

Popular: Stevie RussellPopular: Stevie Russell
Popular: Stevie Russell

St Andrews, which has its West Lothian headquarters in nearby Livingston, wants to continue Stevie’s work by turning his untimely passing into a drive for positive change and continue to build awareness for the various challenges faced by the youth of Polbeth.

Taking place on Saturday, 13 July, the sponsored walk begins at St Andrews’ Stenhouse branch in Edinburgh at 10am, and will finish at Polbeth United Community FC.

Ronnie Robinson, managing director of St Andrews Timber & Building Supplies, said: “Stevie was a huge part of St Andrews, worked as our Area Sales Manager for seven years and was much loved by all his customers and staff alike. His passing has left a massive hole not only in the company but in the Polbeth community.

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“Nobody has been able to take over the huge role Stevie played in organising, funding and raising awareness of the challenges the youth of Polbeth is facing. He firmly believed sports and activities was the way to promote a bright future within the youth community and we are determined to do what we can to keep his light shining bright.

“Next month’s walk will be an emotional occasion but one which we fervently hope will help us take a big step towards fulfilling Stevie’s dream.”

Polbeth Community Hub SCIO was founded in 2018, previously run by West Lothian Council. The team at the hub provides a food bank during the day for young parents, elderly and unemployed, however the youth groups only run on a Thursday afternoon and alternative Fridays.

Shelley Kerr, MBE, former head coach of the Scottish Women’s National Team, was born and raised in Polbeth, and she welcomed the St Andrews initiative, saying: “Football in the community plays a huge part in providing opportunities to kids. It not only supports their physical wellbeing but also the social impact it has on the start to their life journey is huge.

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“The village and community of Polbeth has been integral to my introduction to football and the club itself has given so many kids a platform to develop core skills, confidence, belief and the ability to interact with others.

“Football can be used as a vehicle to help kids develop in so many ways, so investing in the local community is paramount to give our kids the best possible opportunity to thrive in a safe and fun environment.

“The magic of football is not just about kicking a ball; it's about weaving a tight-knit bond that unites a community. It goes beyond just a sport; it becomes a catalyst for personal growth and development. Through football, kids learn essential life skills such as teamwork, discipline, resilience, and leadership.”

Stevie is survived by his loving wife Lorraine, his two sons Stuart and Lewis and granddaughters Harper and Lydia.

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