Pompey Hall of Fame attendees again dig deep to benefit charity

Vince Hilaire, Billy Gilbert and Alan Biley. Picture: Neil Marshall (170295-1)
Vince Hilaire, Billy Gilbert and Alan Biley. Picture: Neil Marshall (170295-1)
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Pompey fans have raised £2,425 following another successful Hall of Fame evening.

And the award-winning Pompey in the Community are the grateful recipient.

On Friday night, Vince Hilaire, Colin Garwood, Paul Merson and Cliff Parker became the latest Blues favourites to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.

A full house once again greeted the popular event, which donates raffle proceeds to a different charity every year.

On this occasion, Pompey in the Community were chosen as the nominated charity.

On Sunday night, the highly-regarded work of Clare Martin & Co was also recognised at the EFL Awards, when named Checkatrade Community Club of the Year at the EFL Awards.

And Hall of Fame organiser Jake Payne was delighted to be able to help.

He said: ‘Clare and her team do a tremendous job and it was great to see that work recognised by the Football League the other night.

‘They are self-funding, so any money raised comes in handy to maintain the many projects they carry out.

‘The Hall of Fame rotates its chosen charity every year and it seemed natural to join forces with Pompey in the Community this time round.

‘I’ve worked with them for many years and know exactly what they do, it’s not all about kids playing football at Roko during half-terms.

‘This year’s Hall of Fame was once again a cracking night. It has become part of the calender and always attracts a full house.

‘I’ve had nothing but good feedback from those who attended, with Colin Garwood’s son, Mark, emailing to say how chuffed his dad was.

‘The food and service was good and all-in-all it was another success for everyone concerned.’

Meanwhile, Fratton Park hosted the annual Former Players Day on Saturday, with 52 familiar faces in attendance.

They included John Milkins, Chris Burns, Martin Kuhl, Billy Wilson, Alan Biley, John McClelland, Linvoy Primus, Terry Brisley, Ray Crawford, Steve Davey, Eoin Hand, Clive Green, Derek Showers and Alan Stephenson.

And their day was capped by watching Paul Cook’s side beat Yeovil 3-1 to take another stride towards promotion.

Payne added: ‘I don’t know many clubs who would be able to attract more than 50 former players back.

‘Aged 90, Lyn Powell was our oldest player, with another four in their 80s, while Dave Waterman was the youngest.

‘I was later contacted by Jeff Hemmerman who had seen the event mentioned on Facebook and was gutted he didn’t know about it.

‘We didn’t have his address details before – but do now.

‘The club were also fantastic.

‘With everyone bringing a guest, we were handed 100 complementary tickets in the Milton end and everyone enjoyed themselves.’