JUST under 200 people took part in a 24-hour football match last week, to raise awareness and funds for mental health in Somerset.

The idea for the event came from Scott, Jamie and Callum Laird, three brothers whose family were affected by mental health a few years ago.

Scott Laird plays for Forest Green Rovers, having previously had spells at Preston North End and Stevenage, while Callum Laird's two goals won Middlezoy Rovers the Somerset County League Cup last month.

Supported and hosted at Bridgwater & Taunton College, the fundraiser started at 3pm on the new 3G surface, before moving into the college’s sports hall.

The match returned to the 3G pitch at 8am, with 50 boys and girls taking part in small-sided games.

A raffle and ‘guess the total amount of goals scored in the 24 hours’ helped raise money, with the winner of the goals competition receiving a Bristol City FC football, signed by the first team squad, after guessing closest to the 631 goals scored.

BTC Active manager Jamie Laird said: “We wanted to do something that would raise mental health awareness, as this is something very close to our hearts.

"Our mother was in and out of hospital with depression and anxiety a few years ago.

"It took a huge toll on us, not just our mother but the whole family.

"The following year was a very testing time, but we got through it with the support from amazing friends and family.”

He added: “We’re all keen footballers, so we came up with the idea of bringing people together through playing the sport we love.

"It was fantastic to see so many people support the event, from four-year-olds to 60-year-olds.

"We were truly blown away by people’s generosity and can’t thank everyone enough.”

Just over £2,500 was raised through donations on the day and the Lairds' JustGiving page.

All money will go towards MIND Somerset, which is a charity supporting people in Somerset suffering from mental health issues.

Donations are still welcome and would be hugely appreciated; if you would like to contribute, you can visit www.justgiving.com/Lairds24HourFootball.