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Latest Pompey Hall of Fame lauded as best yet

Left to right: Compere Tony Male, Alan Biley, Steve Claridge, Norman Piper, Roger Higgins and Andrea Hawkins, who collected the award posthumously for Reg Flewin

Left to right: Compere Tony Male, Alan Biley, Steve Claridge, Norman Piper, Roger Higgins and Andrea Hawkins, who collected the award posthumously for Reg Flewin

 

The 2012 Pompey Hall of Fame has been hailed as the best ever.

And the Pompey Sport & Education Foundation has received a £3,000 shot in the arm following another memorable evening honouring Blues heroes.

Reg Flewin, Norman Piper, Alan Biley and Steve Claridge were the latest hall of fame inductees.

But the highlight of the night was the surprise award to former Pompey secretary Paul Weld.

Weld received his award from former Blues manager Frank Burrows, as he was honoured for 38 years service to the club.

That proved to be an emotional moment, with the dyed-in-the-wool clubman delivering a moving speech.

The event at the Marriott Hotel again proved a roaring success, with ex-Pompey players coming from home and abroad and mingling with fans.

Hall of Fame committee chairman Jake Payne was delighted the event again proved a special night.

With fundraising now breaking the £10,000 barrier for local good causes, Payne thanked those who dug deep to lend their support.

And Payne paid special tribute to those who continue to back the event for the love of the club.

He said: ‘The place was buzzing and it was the best atmosphere we’ve had at a hall of fame night.

‘There’s been a lot of work put in by a lot of people to make it a success. But to hear people like Alan Biley say it’s one of the proudest moments of his life makes it all worthwhile.

‘It was good to see Paul Weld receive his award, and be completely surprised by it.

‘People put their time in for no financial gain.

‘Emma Beal, Rob Haines, Roger Higgins, Tony Male, Peter Jeffs and Dave Richards have all done that. They are not paid a bean – they do it for the love of the club.’

Pompey’s various supporters’ clubs were again well represented at the evening. And there was even a visit from 20 US-based fans who jetted in for the ceremony.

They were treated to a surprise visit from Father Christmas – who made an appearance in homage to the ‘Santa pitch invasion’ against Oxford in 1984.

That delay famously allowed Biley to turn defeat into victory with two goals in stoppage time.

Payne said: ‘It was a proper Pompey do – and it was good to have that special appearance, too!’

 

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