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Hoping to go to South Africa?

FatKen

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Feb 18, 2015
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England

So am I.

I went to New Zealand to write a book about the fans that travelled to watch the 2017 tour. Done all at my own expense (although it did make my Lions trip tax deductible!), I intended to raise a few quid for rugby related charities so printed and published the 256 high quality hardback 'coffee-table' book myself. I could give to the charities straight away that way, rather than wait to make a profit as the traditional publishers wanted to do - and then they'd give a tiny amount to the charities. It's called 'FOCUS ON THE FANS: Lions Tour 2017'. It tells the story in words and over 600 pictures of my own experience and of many of the thousands who also travelled. There's a little nod to the rugby too. Rory Underwood MBE wrote the foreword for me and Warren Gatland (who I interviewed the day before the first test) emailed me the day after the final test with a quote he let me put on the cover. Both acknowledge the huge role Lions fans play in making their tours special. I am nowhere near recovering my costs and never will but don't care - making money wasn't the primary purpose and I have given a few thou to Wooden Spoon, RFU Injured Players Foundation, My Name'5 Doddie Foundation supporting research into Motor Neurone Disease, and Borne, in support of Will Greenwood's epic North Pole trek he completed. I added the latter not just in honour of Will's effort, but also in honour of my now 62 year old sister Val, only 2½ lb at her pre-term birth, and her twin Clifford, who didn't survive..

My own great news is I've been commissioned by the fabulous MSG Tours to repeat the book for the 2021 tour - if it goes ahead and if fans are allowed to travel of course. In the meantime, If you're planning to go you may be in the next book if we cross paths in SA!

Cover.jpg
 

TommiG88

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Hopefully I can make it into the 2021 boom :D
 

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