Football fan Dave set for charity road trip around 42 Scottish league grounds

Dave Paterson on a visit to Barcelona's Camp Nou stadium. Dave Paterson on a visit to Barcelona’s Camp Nou stadium.

A football fan from Caithness is setting off this weekend on a charity road trip that will take in every stadium across Scotland’s top four divisions. Dave Paterson, from Thurso, plans to visit all 42 Scottish Professional Football League grounds within seven days to raise funds for Parkinson’s UK. Dave (59), who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s eight years ago, has taken on long-distance trips before – such as John O’Groats to Land’s End and a tour of all 47 lifeboat stations in Ireland.

He will celebrate his 60th birthday with a party on April 30 when an auction will be held in aid of Parkinson’s UK. Dave, a keen Celtic supporter, decided to combine his passion for football with his love of travelling in his first fundraiser for the national charity. He and his friend Davie, an army veteran, intend to cover more than 1200 miles in a vintage truck after setting off from Castletown on Saturday, April 2.

The first port of call will be the home of Ross County in Dingwall.

They plan to visit between six and 11 grounds each day before finishing up at the national stadium, Hampden Park in Glasgow, on Thursday, April 7. Dave explained: “I was involved with a couple of road trips about 10 years ago. “A guy locally had a big American vintage truck – I was on the fundraising committee for the local lifeboat at the time and he was one of our supporters.

“He wanted to do John O’Groats to Land’s End so I was involved with the organisation of that and became good friends with one of the guys on the committee and his wife who did it with us.

“The following year, we did all the lifeboat stations in Ireland over a fortnight with three trucks. “So me and Davie became friends over the two weeks and he’s been saying for a few years we need to do another trip.

Dave with daughter Hayley. Dave with daughter Hayley.

“With the fact I’m hitting 60 next month and was diagnosed with Parkinson’s about eight years ago, we decided we would do something. “We are splitting the money between Parkinson’s UK and the Homeless Veterans Project because Davie is ex-army.

“We’re hoping to raise GBP1000 for each charity – we’d be happy with that given the current climate.

If we can do more, then the more the better. “I posted the GoFundMe to a Parkinson’s group on Facebook and picked up a GBP50 donation overnight, which was great. “I’m also contacting the clubs and hoping we can get some merchandise or prizes for our auction at the end of the month for my 60th.

“We’re leaving Castletown on Saturday and the first stop will be Ross County’s ground in Dingwall and we will finish the day at Cove Rangers in Aberdeen. Then we’ll make our way down across the rest.” Jan Mattison, regional fundraiser for west of Scotland at Parkinson’s UK, said: “Dave’s road trip is extremely exciting and we are absolutely delighted that he has chosen to raise money on behalf of Parkinson’s UK.

“We wish him safe travels and look forward to hearing all about his venture around Scotland.”

Dave’s journey can be followed on Facebook, while his fundraising page is https://gofund.me/39d82e9c


Do you want to respond to this article?

If so, click here to submit your thoughts and they may be published in print.