A SPORTS fan is donating thousands of pounds to worthy causes after completing 50 sports in his 50th year.
Stuart Batchelor, director of community and planning at South Derbyshire District Council, has taken part in sports ranging from boccia to water polo at venues across the country.
Now, after competing in a rounders game at Rosliston Forestry Centre to round off the challenge, he is around £3,000 better off.
Three quarters of this will go towards hospices in Sheffield and Shropshire that have offered invaluable support to friends and family affected by cancer.
The rest is being pumped back into grassroots sport in South Derbyshire, supporting talented young athletes such as horse rider Matthew Dalley from Willington and swimmer Lewis White from Swadlincote.
Stuart also believes the links forged with individuals and clubs will stand the district in good stead for years to come.
He said: “Completing 50 sports in my 50th year proved really good fun and I’ve been fortunate enough to meet some wonderful individuals.
“What has struck me is the generosity of people, who can’t do enough to help you and go out of their way to give you a glimpse into their hobby, their passion.
“I have made some good friends on the back of these experiences and go away with memories that will last me a lifetime.
“Developing friendly links with clubs and experiencing new sports can only benefit South Derbyshire as we look to create an Olympic legacy.
“Just as important is the difference this will make to the other causes close to my heart and I would like to thank everyone who made this possible.”
Magical moments for Stuart included cycling at the Manchester Velodrome minutes before Team GB and running five miles around the Olympic Park, finishing on the Olympic track.
The father-of-two also managed to conquer his fear of heights by paragliding from a 6,000 foot mountain while on a family holiday in Turkey.
Donations can be made by visiting www.virginmoneygiving.com/stuartbatchelor