Beccles and Bungay teams to play in historic match in memory of club legend
- Credit: Nick Butcher
A charity football match is being revived after a four-year break in memory of a dedicated football legend dubbed 'Mr Beccles FC.'
Years of sporting rivalry between Beccles and Bungay will continue on Sunday as footballers take to the pitch for the Beccles Hospital Cup, renamed this year in memory of John Humby who died in December 2014.
Mr Humby dedicated almost 50 years of service to his beloved Beccles Town Football Club, serving as both manager and secretary, and retired after 47 years in August 2014.
His loss was felt by generations of players and volunteers who described him as a 'club legend.'
Andy Woodcock, chairman of Beccles Town FC, said: 'There can be no better time in the recent history of the club to resurrect a great charity event in the memory of the club legend 'Mr Beccles Town FC' John Humby, the man who continued for many years as club secretary and the driving force for many years to support and organise this worthy charity event.'
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Beccles Town FC will take on Anglian Combination Division 1 rivals Bungay Town FC, with both teams fighting to take home the cup.
And as well as raising money for Beccles Hospital, the competition is a chance for many to see the 2016/17 squads for each team.
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The match will take place at College Meadow in Beccles on Sunday with kick off at 3pm.
Mr Humby's family have been invited and supporters from Beccles, Bungay and beyond are being encouraged to attend.
Entry is £2 for adults, or 50p for under 16s. All proceeds and extra donations will go to the Friends of Beccles Hospital.
The competition was last played in May 2012 when Kirkley and Pakefield FC beat Bungay Town in the final. In previous years the competition was played over a few legs with quarters, semis and a final. And since then the cup has been proudly displayed in Beccles Museum.
Mark Allen, Beccles Town FC webmaster, said: 'The cup was commissioned jointly by Beccles Town Council and the newly formed Beccles Town Football Club in time for the end of the 1919/20 season. Records show that the town
mayor instructed a Mr W Ward to purchase a suitable cup for the competition.
'The cup itself is a fine piece of work and from the hallmark it is possible to ascertain that it was made by silversmiths, James Dixon & Sons of Sheffield in 1912. The engraving on the front of the cup depicts the ancient town seal of Beccles from 1584 showing the town gaol and three sheep in the town pound.'
The match is sponsored by local sports equipment manufacturer MHGoals Ltd and the match ball is sponsored by local builders Adrian Greenmore & Son Ltd.
A pre-match three course lunch is also being organised with tickets at £20. The lunch will be held at 12.30pm for a 1pm start, and tickets must be pre-booked by calling Chris Brown on 07972231256. There are a limited number of spaces left.