Inspirational Jamie Peacock and team doing so much for charity

By Richard Wright

A Yorkshire and England rugby league legend delved into what drives him to succeed at an inspiring evening at Leeds Trinity University.

Former Leeds Rhinos captain Jamie Peacock spoke at A Night with Jamie Peacock MBE and His Team, and was hosted by BBC Sports presenter Tanya Arnold. The evening also included talks from Brand Yorkshire’s managing director Richard Norman, Afghanistan veteran Andy Reid, and Jamie’s former Rhinos teammate Jamie Jones-Buchanan.

This was actually Peacock’s second appearance at LTU, after the university’s sports journalism class hosted an exclusive press conference where he promoted the event in December and at the time said: “You always find that if you’ve been able to see someone who is a motivational speaker, then you come away and think, do you know what, that’s brilliant.”

As well as being thought provoking and entertaining, the event was raising money for Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice, for which Peacock and his team have raised £1000 for so far, from putting on these events.

Jamie previously has said: “The Wheatfields Hospice played a massive role in my dad’s life in the last few months before he passed away.” It clearly meant a lot to the former Leeds Rhinos man to nearly reach the £1000 mark.

‘No White Flag,’ Jamie’s keynote speech, focused on leadership, self-belief and attitude to overcome his lack of natural sporting talent to become one of England’s best leaders and captains.

There was also a touch of comedy in Jones-Buchanan’s speech as he talked about his life with his long name and home town of Bramley, ‘The Big Apple.”  JJB described his former teammate Peacock as “inspirational, a warrior, and hell of a motivation speaker”.

Norman brought a business aspect to the event, giving advice on how to be successful yourself, but also how to help set others up for being a better version of themselves. Norman said: “I want to make sure that kids have the opportunity to be what I’ve done, which is reasonably successful.”

Afghanistan veteran Andy Reid lost both legs and his right arm while serving in the 3rd Battalion the Yorkshire Regiment. He only had 10 days left there when he stood on an improvised explosive device (IED). However, Reid talks of his life now and how his past has allowed him to do some amazing things in his future, for example climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, saying: “I’m a survivor, not a victim”.

Each speaker shared their highs and lows in their careers, and more importantly, how they worked hard to achieve their goals and overcome their setbacks. Arnold said that the talks have inspired her to reinvent herself to get a new skill, so that she makes sure she gets to move forward.

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