Budding writers celebrated at SoL

Budding writers celebrated at SoL

Supporters have put pen to paper as part of Foundation of Light’s ‘Lance Hardy Writing Competition.’ 

Almost 200 entries were received as aspiring authors were invited to share their stories and submit their own sporting experiences as part of the special contest.  

Three winners and three runners-up were at the Stadium of Light on Saturday as Sunderland ran out 3-1 winners v Plymouth Argyle, for a pitchside presentation with Sir Bob Murray and Lance Hardy’s partner Lijana Sutich.  

Budding writers Ava Willis and Freya Mills topped the under-11 category, with Max Ray and Matthew Craggs’ efforts being chosen by the judges for the under-16s.  

Stand-out submissions for the over-16s were Milo Challis and Peter Stephenson; all competition entries were influenced by one of three topics, My First Match, Football and Mining Heritage and Inspired by Sport 

The winners were hand-picked by a distinguished sports writing panel; Henry Winter, Chief Football Writer for The Times, SAFC Historian Rob Mason, Toby Trotman, Commercial Director of Vision Sports Publishing and Literary Agent David Luxton.  

The competition was the chance to celebrate the life and talent of BBC sports editor and author Lance Hardy, who passed away in 2021. He wrote the book Stokoe, Sunderland and '73. Not from the north east, it was the magic of the ‘73 cup run that captured his imagination and started his love affair with Sunderland AFC. 


Winner - Ava Willis  
Runner-up - Freya Mills 

Winner - Max Ray 
Runner-up - Matthew Craggs 

Winner - Milo Challis 
Runner-up - Peter Stephenson 




Players to wear Heart on Sleeve for Foundation

21 February 2024

When the Black Cats host QPR at the Stadium of Light next month, the club will host Foundation of Light Day, the biggest fundraising event of the calendar, to support the work of the Foundation of Light.