Steve: No standing still

Steve Thompson (back, third left) with friends and family raising money for Gary Parkinson in the Blackpool Fun Run
Steve Thompson (back, third left) with friends and family raising money for Gary Parkinson in the Blackpool Fun Run
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Steve Thompson is getting his breath back but admits there’s no time for relaxation at Bloomfield Road this summer.

The Seasiders assistant boss, who took part in Sunday’s Blackpool Fun Run to raise funds for his former colleague Gary Parkinson, says it’s a vital summer for the club in their bid to re-establish themselves as a force in the Championship.

Thompson, who completed the 10K race in 57 minutes, was cheered along the Promenade route as he joined family and friends in a bid to raise up to £4,000 for the Gary Parkinson Trust.

Parkinson, the 45-year-old former Pool defender and youth coach, was diagnosed with locked-in syndrome after a stroke in 2010.

The charity run provided a distraction for the popular Pool no.2 in what is a busy summer for the Seasiders.

Thompson told The Gazette: “The phone is going all the time at the club but we are just waiting to see what happens. We still have seven out-of-contract players who we would like to keep, but whether they stay or not it’s a big summer for the club.

“Agents will have their say, of course, but it will be a very busy summer and hopefully we will get the players in to enable us to have the sort of season we want to have in the Championship.”

Thompson was joined on his charity run by son Curtis, who completed the course in just 41 minutes, daughters Stephanie and Maisie, brother Mark and some family friends, all recognisable in their distinctive ‘4 Parky’ running tops.

The money they all raise will help to buy a new car to take Gary and his family on days out.

Thompson added: “I went to see Gary last Friday. He’s living at home in Westhoughton now and gets the best possible care 24 hours a day. The car would improve his quality of life, and his wife Debbie is very appreciative of everybody who keeps Gary in their thoughts and raises money.”

The next big date in Thompson’s diary is June 21, when pre-season begins for the Seasiders, but he added: “There’s plenty to do before then and we have to make sure we’re organised.”