Toon legend enjoys blast from the past

Alan Shearer (centre) receives the cheque from Cramlington Juniors secretary Norman Walmsely (left) and team manager Andrew Skelton.
Alan Shearer (centre) receives the cheque from Cramlington Juniors secretary Norman Walmsely (left) and team manager Andrew Skelton.
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FOOTBALL legend Alan Shearer took a trip down memory lane to pick up a charity donation from Cramlington Juniors Football Club.

The former England and Newcastle United captain played for Cramlington Juniors for a year between his spells with Wallsend Boys’ Club and the Magpies’ youth team, and he was glad to get the chance to catch up on how his old side is doing.

Shearer, a patron of the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation, his former United manager’s cancer charity, met team boss Andrew Skelton and club secretary Norman Walmsley to take delivery of a cheque for £1,200 raised by a charity football match.

The game was held in memory of former Cramlington Juniors and England player Andy Sinton’s dad Ken.

As well as collecting the cheque, the 40-year-old took the opportunity to catch up on Cramlington’s current form.

He said: “I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Cramlington.

“I learned a lot playing junior football, and it gave me a good grounding which served me well in my career.

“We’re lucky to have such a strong network of junior football clubs in the north east, and they are essential to the future of the game.

“It was a pleasure to hear how well the club is getting on and to receive this cheque for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

“We’re grateful for their efforts, and the money will be very well used helping people fighting cancer in our region.”

The foundation has now raised more than £2.5m to help find more effective treatments for cancer.

Mr Skelton organised the charity match along with Paul Scott and Mr Walmsley.

He said: “We wanted to do our bit to help Sir Bobby’s charity and decided to invite some of our old boys to come back together again to play in a game against the current coaches and managers.

“It was a great occasion and a pleasure to see so many former players and supporters turning out to support this great cause.

“One of our most successful players is Andy Sinton, who went on to play for Spurs and England.

“Andy’s dad Ken helped many players in the early years of Cramlington Juniors and sadly died last year from cancer, so this game was a tribute to him.

“Andy played in the game, as did former Blackpool striker Richie Bond and ex-Blackburn striker Graham Fenton. He also kindly presented us with one of his England shirts to go up in our clubhouse.

“We’re very proud to have raised so much money through the game, and it seemed very fitting that we could hand this cheque over to the most famous ex-Cramlington Juniors player, who is now doing such a fantastic job as a patron of Sir Bobby’s charity.”

Cramlington-born Sinton, 45, formerly a midfielder for Tottenham Hotspur and Sheffield Wednesday, now manages Chropshire side Telford United.

For more information on the charity, visit www.sirbobbyrobsonfoundation.org.uk