Wroxham Football Club to hold match to celebrate 100 years of service by two stalwarts

FA Cup - Wroxham v Fakenham Town at Trafford Park. Photo : Steve Adams

FA Cup - Wroxham v Fakenham Town at Trafford Park. Photo : Steve Adams - Credit: Steve Adams

Footballers in Wroxham will take to the pitch later this month to celebrate two club stalwarts who have clocked up more than 100 years of service.

Pat Penn.

Pat Penn. - Credit: Archant

Wroxham Football Club will play the testimonial at the end of the month in honour of Pat Penn and Alan Royall, who, between them, have played, refereed and spectated for more than a century.

Mr Penn, a life member, became a keen follower of the club after moving to Wroxham in 1954, appearing as a regular in the reserve team aged just 15 and, later, the first side.

Described by the club as a 'full-back who could also fill in as a goalkeeper', Mr Penn, who worked as a firefighter for 40 years, earnt his first Wroxham medal after the team won promotion to Division 2.

But not content with success on the pitch, he became club secretary in 1967, before moving through the ranks as chairman and Sunday youth team coach, as well as club president, a role he holds today.

Alan Royall.

Alan Royall. - Credit: Archant


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In a post about the men published on their website, the club said: 'Not only connected with Wroxham Football Club, Pat was a referee for many seasons on Sundays. On one occasion at East Ruston, he used the first aid skills he had gained as a fire officer to save the life of a player who had swallowed his tongue.'

Fellow life member Mr Royall has been linked with the club, which was founded in 1892, since he signed up as a player in March 1960.

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After an 18-year career in the RAF, he began work at his family boatyard - a role which meant he could only join the Yachtsmen each season after the busy summer period ended.

Off the field, Mr Royall, who is now in his 80s, was elected as club chairman, club president and a trustee of the club until 1992, when he crossed the River Bure to set up the Hoveton Wherrymen Football Club.

The match will be held at Trafford Park, on Skinners Lane, at 2pm on Saturday, July 30, with a barbecue and entertainment planned. The club said it would be 'an excellent way for supporters to thank these two gentlemen for their many years of service to the club and football in general'.

Do you have a Wroxham story for us? Email lauren.cope@archant.co.uk

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