Sunderland car dealership helps Fans Museum project with minibus donation

Michael Ganley receives the keys to the new minibus from Jennings James Chorlton.
Michael Ganley receives the keys to the new minibus from Jennings James Chorlton.

Members of the popular Fans Museum project will be able to get about and show off the exhibition’s extensive collection thanks to a car dealership’s donation of a minibus.

The community group, which is based at the former Monkwearmouth Station Museum in Sunderland, has match-worn kits, programmes and other memorabilia among its hundreds of items.

Michael Ganley receives the keys to the new minibus from Jennings James Chorlton.

Michael Ganley receives the keys to the new minibus from Jennings James Chorlton.

As well as being open for football supporters to visit, the group often go out and about to give as many people as possible the chance to get involved.

And now, they will be able to go further after Jennings kindly donated a new minibus for members to use.

Museum founder Michael Ganley told of his delight at the generosity of the firm after he agreed a deal with the company’s James Chorlton.

“This means we can now go out to isolated areas where people have struggled to get back into the city from, including the Coalfield areas and County Durham,” said Michael.

“It enables us to go further afield with our roadshow but also have a facility to pick up people from care homes and places like that, and bring them back to the museum to have an afternoon or morning session.

“It encourages a lot more connectivity and will bring a lot more people into our hub.

“It’s bringing down social isolation, which is a massive problem throughout the country, particularly among men of a certain age.

“We’re not going to take no for an answer.

“We’re going to get out, pick up the people and bring them here so they feel like they are part of something.”

Michael explained how the partnership with Jennings came about.

“We met in the early part of the year,” he said.

“They have a fledgling company and they wanted some awareness and attraction.

“They knew what we were doing and how we were doing it.

“We got talking through James and they offered their services in relation to a minibus.

“A couple of weeks ago, we received a phonecall to say they were going to pop by, and they came with a nine-seater minibus.

“We’re already had graphics put on it from Wrap Monkey.”