BRADFORD City fans swapped their beds for sleeping bags last night to raise money for youth homelessness charity Centrepoint.

The event, now in its fourth year, took place at Valley Parade. The £30,000 raised will support Centrepoint’s work with homeless young people in Bradford.

More than 50 colleagues at Yorkshire Building Society got involved as part of their charity partnership with End Youth Homelessness, of which Centrepoint is a member.

Bradford West MP Naz Shah went along to hear about Centrepoint’s work and to judge the shelter-building competition. Bradford City players Colin Doyle, Alex Gilliead and Alex Jones also joined in.

Centrepoint works with more than 200 homeless young people in Bradford, providing accommodation and support to help young people to turn their lives around by gaining essential life skills, tackling their physical and mental health issues and moving into education or employment.

A special guest taking part this year was Marilyn Meer, a lifelong Bantams fan who celebrated her 81st birthday at the sleep out.

She was joined by 11-year-old Ben Rosbrook, the youngest participant at the event, who stayed to help clear up this morning.

James Mason, Bradford City’s chief operating officer, who took part in the event himself, said: “I am so proud of all the Bradford City fans who came down to show their support for the charity. In true Bantam spirit Marilyn braved the cold on her 81st birthday – an example to us all.

“The event gave us a chance to show our solidarity with our friends in the city who find themselves without permanent accommodation. Holding it at this time of year also gave us a realistic understanding of what so many people will go through in their daily lives.”

Faye Edmondson, Centrepoint’s Regional Fundraising Manager, added: “Sleep Out doesn’t try to replicate the true terror of spending a night on the streets with nowhere else to go, but it’s still a challenge. Participants like the magnificent Marilyn felt the cold and experienced the discomfort which homeless young people have had to endure.

“This was our fourth Bradford Sleep Out and it’s testament to how enjoyable an event it is that people keep coming back – but there’s a serious side to it. The money we raise will help support vulnerable and homeless young people in Bradford to gain the skills and confidence they need to find work or return to education."

While Richard McClean, Managing Director of Grand Central Rail which supported the event, said: “Supporting local charities and organisations is something we are really passionate about at Grand Central. We’re pleased to support Sleep Out in Bradford, which is an initiative that provides such vital support to the communities along our routes.”