THREE long-standing members of the Wharfedale RUFC family have raised over £23,000 for a couple of great charities.

Former first team captain Richard Rhodes and his wife Megan’s deeply moving story about their baby daughter Bella has touched many hearts across the club and the wider rugby community.

Richard joined Wharfedale as an 18-year-old, winning England U18, Yorkshire U20 and full county honours, as a second-row who played 170 National League matches for the Avenue outfit.

Persistent shoulder problems forced an early retirement at 28.

He, Megan and their little son Bobby welcomed baby Bella into the family in July 2020 in the midst of the pandemic.

Unfortunately, she has since been battling congenital heart disease and the family want to show their appreciation to the amazing cardiology team that has been there for them throughout.

They are determined to do this by raising awareness and funds for The Children’s Heart Surgery Fund, which supports the Leeds Congenital Heart Unit.

Their appeal has reached well over £14,000 and is still open for donations at

Meanwhile, Skipton businessman Duncan Bullough and Colne-based vet Robin Hargreaves have raised a combined, at time of writing, £8,390, for the MyName'5 Doddie Foundation.

After contracting Motor Neurone Disease (MND), Scotland legend Doddie Weir created the charity to aid research and increase awareness of the cruel disease.

The pairs fundraising endeavours are in memory of former Greens player Chris Davies who died of MND at the tragically young age of 40 in 2003.

Chris was a gifted fly-half who played a huge part in Wharfedale's rise through the league structure.

Ever-present from the club's first league season (1987/88), when Wharfedale were champions of North East 1, Chris hardly missed a game in the following nine years.

Three more promotions in that time culminated in his final season (1995-96) when Wharfedale went undefeated through what was then National 5 North to win promotion into National 1.

He was a man of great charisma who was diagnosed with MND at age 36 and left behind a huge hole at Wharfedale as well as a devastated widow, Jenny and two young children.

In a 35-day challenge. Robin, who was Chris' best man at his wedding in 1986, distanced over 200km on his rowing machine while Duncan ran 10km every day, finishing on an incredible 356km.

Scottish great John Jeffrey thanked the pair for their efforts - and you can still sponsor them by going to their respective JustGiving pages.

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