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Darts ace Andy targets pupils

PUBLISHED: 11:31 17 July 2008 | UPDATED: 15:02 25 August 2010

Bexley
05-02-08
Pancake race in Thamesmead 
Andy Fordham

Bexley 05-02-08 Pancake race in Thamesmead Andy Fordham

ANDY The Viking Fordham will visit schools to stop youngsters falling victim to the binge drinking epidemic that has left him needing a liver transplant.

ANDY 'The Viking' Fordham will visit schools to stop youngsters falling victim to the binge drinking epidemic that has left him needing a liver transplant.

The Darts ace, who used to run The Rose pub in Overy Street, Dartford, when he tipped the scales at 30 stone, has been plagued by health problems.

In 2004 the 46-year-old won the World Professional Darts Championship but has since battled obesity and a drink problem, reportedly downing up to 20 bottles of beer a day followed by vodka and brandy.

On Friday he was told he needs a transplant by a consultant at Kings College Hospital, but is adamant he will recover and help youngsters beat the booze.

His agent Steve Mottersead said: "Andy is determined to turn it in to a positive. He does not want to preach but wants to help young kids understand what has happened to him and the dangers of binge drinking.

"We are in talks with a couple of charities who go in to colleges and schools and talk to students about the dangers of alcohol. There is one in particular that runs a drink awareness service in schools and they are very keen. Binge drinking is a major problem in society and Andy wants to get that stark message across 'don't end up like me'. He does not want to wallow, he wants to help others avoid this danger."

The Dartford favourite is suffering from cirrhosis, a scarring of the liver, and is on medication to control the condition.

Fordham, who now runs the Cutty Sark pub, in Thamesmead, with his wife Jenny, 45, revealed his trauma last week.

After giving up the beer and a dramatic lifestyle change, Fordham slimmed down and backed the relaunch of the Bexley Times sister paper, The Dartford and Swanley Times.

michael.adkins@archant.co.uk

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