Ipswich/Hadleigh: Ipswich Town legend leads tributes to tragic Sophtlogic boss
HADLEIGH/IPSWICH: He was an “absolute superstar” and a wonderful guy.
That is how Ipswich Town legend Kevin Beattie has today remembered a treasured friend who died suddenly last month.
Philip Hullis, chief executive of Sophtlogic, based in Fore Street, Ipswich, was found dead at his home in Station Yard, Hadleigh, on February 11.
About 12 years ago, Mr Hullis, 52, approached Mr Beattie, who retired from playing football in the 1990s, to help him set up and run his very own Sunday league football team. The Sophtlogic team now play in the Ipswich and Suffolk Flare Recruitment League fourth division.
And Town hero Mr Beattie is not the only high-profile manager they have attracted.
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John Wark, who played for Ipswich Town for the majority of his career, also led the Sophtlogic team, before handing back to Mr Beattie last season.
Mr Beattie said: “He was an absolute superstar. It is a very sad occasion, I am devastated.
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“It hit me like a bombshell. My thoughts go out to his mum, family and everybody at Sophtlogic. It was such a surprise the players are all as upset as I am.” He said it was Mr Hullis’ love of the game that led to the pair forging a firm friendship. “It was 12 years ago when Phil came to me. I had retired from football and he asked me to help him start a team up for his business,” he added.
“He was a big, big fan and wanted to start his own team,” Mr Beattie added. “And we have been friends ever since. Phil was a gentle, quiet person, a much-loved man. He was a wonderful guy who loved his football.”
For their first six years, Sophtlogic’s team was guided by Mr Beattie, who then handed over the reigns to Mr Wark.
But last season Mr Beattie returned to the helm. “I love it. Football is my life, I love it through and through. We are having a good season, Phil would come out training with us, he was really hands on.
“We will dedicate the rest of this season to his memory.”
An inquest into Mr Hullis’ death, held last Wednesday at Ip-City, determined the 52-year-old took his own life.
Recording the verdict, Greater Suffolk coroner Dr Peter Dean said the cause of death was suspension by ligature.
n Pay your tributes to Mr Hullis. Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org