‘Fantastic’ Kevin Beattie memorial night raises more than £3,000 for statue fund
- Credit: GAINSBOROUGH LABOUR CLUB
A special fundraising evening in honour of Kevin Beattie raised more than £3,000 towards The Beat Goes On, the campaign for a statue of the Ipswich Town legend.
The event was held at Gainsborough Labour and Social Club in Landseer Road, Ipswich, where unique signed shirts and other items were auctioned. Fans also enjoyed raffles, live music and a disco.
Beattie reportedly visited the social club after Town won the FA Cup final in 1978, celebrating with fans in to the early hours.
Labour Club treasurer Marty Nicholls and secretary Lynn Bowers co-organised the event. Marty said: "It was fantastic and was so well supported. We have raised £3,293.60 - we were hoping to raise between £1,500 and £2,000, so it is a lot more than we hoped for.
"We really want to thank everyone who came and supported us, and who gave draw prizes and items."
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Legendary former Blues player and manager George Burley was a special guest, and did a Q&A session with the host for the evening, BBC Radio Suffolk's Mark Murphy.
Read more - You can donate to the statue appeal here. "It was great to see George Burley. He was fantastic, and had a lot of great stories to tell about the old days, and about Kevin. He brought along a ball signed by all the old players and that went for £140," Martin said.
"Members of Kevin Beattie's family were there and his daughter, Emma, said a few words at the end."
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Items auctioned on the evening included shirts signed by some of the club's greatest names.
A vintage home strip worn and signed by Richard Naylor against Bolton in the 1998/99 season went under the hammer for £300, and a framed white Ipswich shirt signed by Kevin Beattie himself, along with Russell Osman, Mick Mills and John Wark, fetched £250.
Another shirt, signed by Andre Dozzell and the Ipswich team from their FA Cup match against Accrington Stanley, went for £140.
The Beat Goes On campaign, a joint project between the Ipswich Star, BBC Radio Suffolk and the TWTD website, is raising money to put up a statue of Beattie, designed by sculptor Sean Hedges-Quinn, outside Portman Road, joining Sir Alf Ramsey and Sir Bobby Robson.
The former star centre-half died suddenly in September last year at the age of 64.
More than £50,000 has been raised, including a plinth donated to the cause - which is well on the way to meeting the £110,000 needed to see the project finished.