Page last updated at 12:40 GMT, Wednesday, 21 April 2010 13:40 UK

Bereaved boy beats ash flight ban to attend funeral

Connor Cameron
Connor Cameron should arrive back in time for his mother's funeral

A businessman has helped a bereaved teenage boy stranded in Spain by volcanic ash to return home to Scotland for his mother's funeral.

Mark Shaw, chief executive of property group Hazeldene, arranged for Connor Cameron to be chauffer-driven to Zeebrugge to catch a ferry to Rosyth.

The 13-year-old had travelled to Madrid with Johnstone Burgh Boys Football Club after the death of his mother, Theresa.

Mr Shaw also arranged a coach to take 29 other members of the club back home.

Connor's mother died shortly before he was due to attend the trip to Spain.

His family, who helped raise cash for the training camp, decided he should go as planned.

But Connor's return for his mother's funeral was placed in doubt after volcanic ash for an Icelandic volcano grounded most air traffic across northern Europe.

When Mr Shaw learned of Connor's difficulty he stepped in to help.

Free support

He offered to pay thousands of pounds to have Connor and his team mates returned home.

However, after their plight was drawn to the attention of the companies involved they lent their support free of charge.

A chauffer-driven car was laid on to drive Connor, via an overnight stop in Paris, to Zeebrugge in Belgium.

He is due to catch a ferry on Thursday to Rosyth in Fife and be home in time for his mother's funeral on Friday.

A coach is also being provided to bring the remaining members of the football club home by the weekend.

Mark Shaw (centre)
Mark Shaw (centre) paid for Connor Cameron to return home

In a statement issued through a spokesman, Mr Shaw said: "When I heard about this the main thing was to get the team home.

"But even more important was to get Connor back on time for his mother's funeral.

"Everybody has been working hard on this and we are confident we are going to get them all home for the weekend.

"We managed to pull out all the stops and Iberdrola, Norfolkline and the Scottish government have all combined well to make it possible."

The Hazeldene Group sponsors Johnstone Burgh Boys Football Club and owns the team's Keanie Park ground.

It plans to develop the site at some point in the future and find an alternative home for the team.

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