George Gandy Legacy Fund

Be part of the future of Loughborough athletics through a gift to the George Gandy Legacy Fund

The George Gandy Legacy Fund exists to assist athletes with access to things which would be beyond their financial circumstances, such as athletics equipment, travel to competitions both domestically and abroad, competition entry fees, physiotherapy / medical treatments.

The fund also exists to assist coaches in their track and field athletics activities whilst at Loughborough. It is recognised that coaches during their coaching careers give up huge amounts of time and in some cases incur additional expenses. Athletics coaching is still primarily an unpaid voluntary activity and many coaches wouldn’t want it any other way.

George had a passionate desire to support athletes from less fortunate backgrounds who fell outside of national funding criteria. He facilitated athletes getting financial and other support to enable them to be the best they could be.

It is the wish of the Gandy family following on from George’s extraordinary coaching career to recognise that athlete’s success is based not only on a huge commitment by the athlete but this is done in partnership with coaches, whose work can so often go unrecognised.

About George Gandy

George Gandy devoted most of his working life to sport at Loughborough. Over five decades he combined academic responsibilities as a sports scientist with coaching student athletes as long-serving Director of Athletics and Lead Endurance Coach.

Read more

Who will benefit from the George Gandy Legacy Fund?

Donations to the Fund will be used to support:

  • Students who are part of the Loughborough Students Athletics Club and are not already funded by an external body such as a sports National Governing Body - especially those students who are experiencing financial hardship
  • Athletics coaches at Loughborough, especially in their professional development and career/learning opportunities.

What difference could my gift make?

  • £50 could help an athlete meet travel costs to attend competitions or training
  • £100 could support an athlete with physio and recovery from injury
  • £250 could pay for new shoes, sportswear or athletics equipment
  • £500 could fund an emergency hardship grant for a student athlete facing unexpected financial difficulties, for instance if they are a victim of theft or sudden loss of income
  • £1,000 could enable a budding coach to develop in their career with professional development courses
  • £5,000 could support a student athlete from a low-income background with bills and basic living expenses throughout their degree, reducing the pressure to make ends meet by working long hours around their studies and athletics training

Impact Stories

In February 2022, the first George Gandy Legacy Grants were awarded to five students; Alex, Ben, Indira, Kirsty, and Ned.

We are delighted to introduce you to each of them and the impact the grants will have on them and their sporting careers.

Alex Millard

Alex is a long-distance runner from Kent, who will use her grant to help fund her travels to the World Students Cross Country Championships. She says:

"This support is appreciated hugely, and I owe many thanks to George’s family and friends. The grant is allowing me to represent GB for the first time, which is a valuable experience for my athletics career.

I was lucky enough to meet George on my Loughborough visit day in 2019 - he had an influential aura about him, and our chat helped to consolidate my desire to attend this great university. For this, I am very grateful. Becoming part of the Loughborough endurance culture, created by George himself, has made clear that this was the best decision for me.

A special thanks comes also from my parents, who were lectured by George here from 1989-1993."

Ben Pearson

Ben is a para-athlete who received a Legacy grant because he needed financial assistance to pay for a new socket for his leg. He said:

"I’d like to say a massive thank you to the family and friends of George Gandy for providing me with the opportunity to get a new socket for my blade.

The sockets for me are the most important part of my blade as they are what provide my stump with the ability to be able to run. Unfortunately, the NHS does not provide blades so all my sockets are privately funded. The sockets if they do not fit right will cause infections, sores and ingrown hairs which then have a detrimental effect on my health.

With the grant, I am now able to get a new socket made to be ready for the outdoor season allowing me to compete this year in a comfortable and safe socket and help me on the road to achieving the goal of making the Paralympics in 2024. Thank you."

In June 2022, Ben unveiled the One Giant Leap For Humankind sculpture by artist Jacob Chandler at the site of the Commonwealth Games 2022. Please click here to read about the sculpture and how Ben inspired its creation.

Indira Patel

As a long-distance runner experiencing injuries throughout her sporting career, Indira, applied for a Legacy Grant to help with the cost of physios and buying running trainers. 

"I would like to sincerely like to thank all those that have contributed towards the George Gandy Legacy Fund.

I am a top national level long-distance runner, with aspirations of competing for my country, and this grant will help me greatly.

For me, money has been a large barrier to my success in running, as I have not been able to afford new trainers when necessary leading to injuries, or the physio fees needed to deal with my injuries. In the past injuries have led me to take huge amounts of time out of the sport, affecting my performance, and wellbeing in general. With this new level of support, I will be able to improve my chances of staying injury-free by buying some new trainers and seeing the physio the next time I become injured. Moreover, I can lower my work hours, thus removing some additional stress, allowing me to perform better both academically and sport-wise. Overall, this should ensure I can continue training, competing, and improving.

I am a scorer for the university team in races, and by staying injury-free, I should be able to continue doing my part to contribute to the success of the university. So your contribution could extend beyond helping just me to the whole of the University Cross Country team.

Thank you very much again for your willingness to support athletes like myself- your kindness means a lot."

Jack Turner

Jack is a hammer thrower, who applied for a Legacy grant to help fund recovery treatment after struggling for a long while. He said:

"I want to express my extreme gratitude for the Legacy grant from the George Gandy Legacy Fund to fund three physio sessions. I have been struggling with this issue for a long period of time and this aid will enable me to finally attain proper help with recovery and continuation of my athletic career.

I am very appreciative of this and couldn’t thank the supporters of the George Gandy Legacy Fund enough."

Kirsty Walker

Kirsty is a runner from Berkshire, who was awarded a grant to support her in going to the World Students Cross Country Championships. 

"I am honoured to receive funds from the George Gandy Legacy Fund.

The grant will allow me to represent BUCS at the World University Cross Country Championships in Aveiro, Portugal. I am excited to use these championships as a great stepping stone in my career, both in cross country and track. I did not expect to win BUCS or qualify for the World University Championships; therefore, now I can comfortably accept my place without financial worries is a great relief.

I knew George personally and he would have loved to know that he is still supporting endurance athletes at Loughborough. George always wanted to help athletes to reach their full potential, I hope I can make him proud in Portugal. 

I would like to thank everyone involved in the fund; you are ensuring the memory of George is carried forward and allowing athletes to achieve their goals."

Ned Potter

Ned applied for a grant from the George Gandy Legacy Fund to support his attendance at the World Students Cross Country Championships.

"Dear family, friends and donors to the George Gandy legacy fund, I was recently offered the opportunity to run for GB at the FISU World Cross County Championships held in Portugal over the 4000m leg in the relay. This was a dream turned reality for me as ever since beginning the sport as a year 5 in my local cross country I have always had ambitions to run for my country. The cost of this trip had a fairly hefty price tag and as a student, the cost could have possibly prevented me from going. As a result, I turned to the George Gandy Legacy Fund which very generously agreed to contribute towards a large portion of the cost. I cannot thank the donors of this fund enough, I am very appreciative and will do everything I can to honour the memory of George. Thank you"

 

 

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