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Kevin Beattie memorial night set to raise thousands for statue fund

PUBLISHED: 05:30 03 April 2019 | UPDATED: 11:55 03 April 2019

Lynn Bowers, Lisa Evans and Sara Jonas of the Gainsborough Labour Club are organising an auction of sporting memorabilia to help raise money for the Ipswich Star/EADT Kevin Beattie statue campaign Picture: SONYA DUNCAN

Lynn Bowers, Lisa Evans and Sara Jonas of the Gainsborough Labour Club are organising an auction of sporting memorabilia to help raise money for the Ipswich Star/EADT Kevin Beattie statue campaign Picture: SONYA DUNCAN

Archant 2019

Thousands of pounds are being raised in honour of Kevin Beattie at the social club where he celebrated Ipswich Town's FA Cup victory in 1981.

One of the prizes is a shirt signed by Town legends including The Beat himself Picture: SONYA DUNCANOne of the prizes is a shirt signed by Town legends including The Beat himself Picture: SONYA DUNCAN

The Gainsborough Labour and Social Club in Landseer Road is inviting fans to enjoy an evening of auctions, raffles and live music.

The club revealed two shirts for auction on April 2 bearing the signatures of some of the club’s biggest legends.

One is a framed white Ipswich shirt signed by Kevin Beattie himself, along with Russell Osman, Mick Mills and John Wark, and the other is a vintage home strip worn and signed by Richard Naylor against Bolton in the 1998/99 season.

Club secretary and one of the organisers, Lynn Bowers, said: “We can’t believe the number of people that have offered to help us, we’re all very grateful but it was such a surprise.”

World Champion snooker player Mark Selby has donated a signed cue to be raffled off on the night Picture: SONYA DUNCANWorld Champion snooker player Mark Selby has donated a signed cue to be raffled off on the night Picture: SONYA DUNCAN

“It’s like every time we reach out to someone they’ve given us a hand, either providing something for free or giving us a raffle prize, it’s just incredible.

“The shirts are already being bid on, one is up to £300 already, we cannot believe it.

“Our whole committee is pitching in to get ready for the evening on May 10 and I can’t thank them enough for all their hard work.”

Beattie reportedly visited the social club after Town won the FA Cup final in 1978, celebrating with fans in to the early hours.

One shirt up for auction is a shirt signed by all of the current players at the club on a new home shirt Picture: SONYA DUNCANOne shirt up for auction is a shirt signed by all of the current players at the club on a new home shirt Picture: SONYA DUNCAN

The Beat Goes On campaign - a joint-project between the Ipswich Star, BBC Suffolk and fan forum TWTD - is raising money for the erection of a statue of The Beat outside Portman Road.

Last month the total tipped over £50,000 - including a plinth donated to the cause - which is well on the way to meeting the £110,000 needed to see the project finished.

The social club is also reaching out to Town players past and present and was also in touch with boss Paul Lambert.

“Paul told us he was very sorry and that he couldn’t make it, but I think it says volumes that he took the time to reply to us personally,” Added Mrs Bowers.

The auction for the signed shirts goes on until the night of the charity event on May 10 Picture: SONYA DUNCANThe auction for the signed shirts goes on until the night of the charity event on May 10 Picture: SONYA DUNCAN

“We’re hoping to see as many players and ex-players there as possible.”

Tickets are £5 for an adult and £1 for a child but availability is limited and fans are encouraged to book early.

Call Lynn Bowers and Martin Nicholls on 07812 480622 or 07903 887853 for more information.

You can donate to the Beat Goes On campaign here.

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