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Women’s rugby match in memory of Natalie Naylor

* 26 April 2004 *

Women’s rugby match in memory of Natalie Naylor

Rival women's rugby teams are to take to the field in memory of University of Sussex student Natalie Naylor, who died from meningitis earlier this year.

The University of Brighton women's team and the University of Sussex side, of which Natalie was a member, will scrum down together for the Naylor Memorial varsity match, the winner of which will be presented with the Naylor Memorial trophy.

The match will take place at Eastbourne Rugby Club, Park Avenue, Eastbourne, on Wednesday April 28. Kick-off is at 4.30pm.

Prior to the match, Sussex team captain Lizzie Brown will present a cheque for £3,902.77 for the Natalie Naylor Trust - set up to support research into meningitis in Natalie's memory - to Natalie's parents, Graham and Christine Naylor, of Carshalton, Surrey.

The money was raised by Natalie's friends and fellow students through a yellow ribbon campaign, launched on February 17 this year, for which there was huge support. The University covered all costs, so all the money raised is going directly to the Trust.

Second-year student Natalie died in hospital in Carshalton, Surrey on January 24 2004, after contracting the B strain of meningococcal meningitis. Family and friends decided to honour Natalie's memory with an event that would serve as a fitting tribute to Natalie, as well as raising money for research and awareness of the disease. There is currently no vaccine for the B strain, although young people are now routinely vaccinated for the C strain.

Sussex team captain Lizzie Brown says: "This match will make Natalie feel especially close to us once more as I'm sure that she will be cheering us on all the way. We're hoping to take home the trophy made in Natalie's name to show her our ever-lasting love."

The University of Sussex has also arranged to sponsor a race - the University of Sussex, Natalie Naylor Memorial Maiden Fillies Stakes - at Brighton racecourse on 29 June, in Natalie's memory. The University is also planning to provide a commemorative bench and tree planting in memory of Natalie.

* Notes for editors *

For contact details at map for Eastbourne Rugby Club, see

Film/photo opportunities:

  1. University of Sussex women's rugby team captain Lizzie Brown and the team will present a cheque to the Natalie Naylor Trust to Natalie's parents, Graham and Christine Naylor, at 3.45pm.
  2. There will be a team picture opportunity at 4pm.
  3. The Naylors will also present a trophy to the winning side, at approximately 6.15pm.
  4. For meningitis information, see
  5. Press Office contacts:
    Maggie Clune or Jacqui Bealing Tel 01273 678888 or Fax 01273 877456 or

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