Revel in Ipswich Town’s European glory

IPSWICH Town’s achievements in European football are to be celebrated in a new exhibition launched this weekend.

Coinciding with the 30th anniversary of the Blues’ UEFA Cup victory, the exhibition will also cover the club’s first foray into European football in September 1962 and the period in the 1970s and early 1980s when Town played in Europe for nine out of 10 seasons.

This, of course, culminated in lifting the UEFA Cup trophy in May 1981 when they beat AZ 67 Alkmaar in the two-legged final.

The more recent exploits in 2001 and 2002 will also be celebrated in the exhibition, which opens in Ipswich Town Hall Galleries this weekend.

The collection of memorabilia and images will include two of John Wark’s hat-trick balls from the cup-winning campaign as well as the club’s official replica of the UEFA Cup and Eric Gates’ cup-winners embroidered home shirt from the following season.

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Town chief executive Simon Clegg said: “The anniversary of the club winning the UEFA Cup 30 years ago has given us the perfect excuse to put on public display some of the wonderful memorabilia and artefacts that the club has amassed over many years of European competition.”

Jayne Austin, collections manager for Colchester and Ipswich Museum Service, added: “We have been given unprecedented access to their collection of memorabilia for this exhibition. John Wark has also generously loaned the two hat-trick balls he won during the victorious 1980/81 UEFA Cup campaign.”

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The exhibition is free to the public and will run from Saturday, May 21 to Saturday, September 3, 2011. It is open from Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10am till 5pm.

It will also be open on Bank Holiday Monday – May 30 – from 10am to 8pm, when it is hoped that several of the players from the UEFA Cup win will be present before they attend the 30th anniversary celebrations at the Corn Exchange, run jointly by the Evening Star, Ipswich Council and the football club.

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