Bill sheds light on the club sign he made with his dad

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A PUB sign unearthed in a cellar underneath Fratton Park has been reunited with the man who helped make it.

Bill Dick, now 73, was working with his dad William as a signwriter when Brickwoods, which owned the pub, commissioned them to make the sign.

It hung outside The Pompey Pub, which has been closed for years and was turned into part of the stadium's office complex.

The sign features a Pompey player in a blue shirt, white shorts and red socks.

The identity of the player pictured has caused some debate among Pompey fans.

Most believed it was Brian Lewis but some noted a distinctive bow-legged gait reminscent of Albie McCann.

Now Bill has cleared up any doubt by confirming that the picture is of Lewis, who had two stints for the club between 1963-67 and 1974-75.

He said: 'When I looked at the sign I immediately knew my old man did that.'

Remembering the time the sign was created, Bill added: 'I'm almost sure we worked from a picture that was printed in the Portsmouth Evening News.

'I'm not sure when we made it, but it must have been between 40 and 50 years ago.

'I remember hanging it outside the pub, and I was a bit fitter in those days.

'The outside of it is made of metal, with the picture being on perspex.

'It's got a light inside it as well.'

Bill, from Widley, got in touch with The News after seeing the story about the surprise discovery in the paper over Christmas.

Mr Dick's father owned George A Dick Ltd, based first in Thomas Street and then later in Somers Road.

Bill later sold the company. Mr Dick's son Andy, 37, accompanied his dad to Fratton Park to see the sign once it was discovered.

Andy said: 'It's good. I'm very honoured to be part of it, and that it's something that's still around.'

The sign was found by commercial director Lucius Peart when staff were in the middle of moving from the former head office at Rodney Road back into the stadium.

Walking down a steep, dark staircase into what was once the pub's cellar, Mr Peart came across the sign lying forgotten in a darkness.

The pub was a regular watering hole for Pompey fans before it closed two decades ago.

At its height, Pompey player Billy Wilson ran the pub, and he would often be behind the bar by the time it opened at 6pm after playing a home game that afternoon.