A son has paid a heartfelt tribute to his "amazing" mum, who was a huge part of the Ipswich Town footballing family.

Irene Davey, from Ipswich, died at the age of 89 on Sunday.

The great-grandmother had been lifetime supporter of the Blues and attended her first game at Portman Road back in the 1940s.

She served as the chair of the Ipswich branch of the Ipswich Town Supporters Club for 40 years and rubbed shoulders with some of Town's greatest-ever players and managers, including Mick Mills, Terry Butcher and Sir Bobby Robson.

Ipswich Star: Irene gives Kieran McKenna a hug after the Blues secured promotionIrene gives Kieran McKenna a hug after the Blues secured promotion (Image: Family)

Irene leaves behind three sons – Andy, Steven and Alan – and a number of grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Andy said a "huge void" had been left in the family after her death at the weekend.

He said: "We all called her 'the Queen'.

"She was the rock the rest of us stood on and she was always there for us.

"She was just an amazing mum – I know there are a lot of amazing mums, but she was so special.

Ipswich Star: Irene with some of her great-grandchildrenIrene with some of her great-grandchildren (Image: Family)

"Mum was honest, reliable and gave everyone the moral support they needed. She's left a huge void in our family."

Andy also spoke about his mum's passion for the Blues and how she had followed them during the club's glory days, which included the FA Cup final win over Arsenal in 1978 and the 1981 UEFA Cup victory against AZ Alkmaar.

He said: "Ipswich Town was an extended part of our family – we are all supporters. Whenever one of her grandchildren or great-grandchildren were born, she would enrol them with Junior Blues.

Ipswich Star: Irene with Kieran McKennaIrene with Kieran McKenna (Image: Ipswich Town)

"There were always blue and white scarves and rosettes in her home.

"We've still got so many members of our family going to Portman Road. It often brought the family together.

"I remember the family got into two minibuses to take us to the FA Cup final against Arsenal."

Irene's prominent role in the fan community also meant she got to know iconic Town figures on a personal basis.

Andy added: "Mum always talked about the good old days. She knew Sir Bobby Robson personally.

"Micky Mills she absolutely adored, too. She thought he was the best player she'd ever seen.

"Alan Hunter was a personal friend, and Terry Butcher always gave her a hug.

"The club has always been our club. It feels like the people of Ipswich and Suffolk are included, and that is so difficult to do but is so important."

Ipswich Star: Irene supported Ipswich Town for almost eight decadesIrene supported Ipswich Town for almost eight decades (Image: Family)

Town currently sit in second in the Championship after a stunning promotion campaign last season, with Irene having the chance to meet the players and manager Kieran McKenna after the victory over Exeter City last April.

Andy revealed his mum wanted to last at least until the end of the season, when Town hope to secure back-to-back promotions.

He joked: "Mum said she hoped she lived long enough to see Town get promoted, so she will haunt the place if they don't!"

Andy wished to thank Lee Smith, disability liaison officer at Ipswich Town, and former chairman David Sheepshanks for their efforts in caring for Irene on matchdays.

He also paid tribute to everyone else who has worked at the club over the years.

Ipswich Star: Irene with her great-granddaughter, AmelieIrene with her great-granddaughter, Amelie (Image: Family)

Announcing her death on social media, Ipswich Town said in a statement: "The Club was saddened to learn of the passing of Irene Davey.

"Irene, a supporter of the Club for close to 80 years, was also Chair of the Ipswich branch of the Supporters Club, a position she held for 40 years, and was a committee member and patron of the Official Supporters Club.

"May she rest in peace."