Calls to re-open National Football Museum

Tributes to Sir Tom Finney on his statue outside Preston North End
Tributes to Sir Tom Finney on his statue outside Preston North End

More than 9,000 people in one day joined an internet campaign to turn the former National Football Museum at Deepdale into a Sir Tom Finney Museum in tribute to the Preston’s most beloved son who died on Friday aged 91.

Nick Lenehan, who was brought up in Deepdale, set up a Facebook page dedicated to the cause on Monday afternoon after standing at the ‘Splash’ statue over the weekend.

The care worker said: “I was down at the Splash on Sunday and was wondering what would happen to all the scarves and shirts that have been left there.

“I thought the empty space in the former Football Museum building would be a good place to put them, and somewhere people can visit to continue paying their respects.

“I originally wanted to get to 10,000 ‘likes’ on the Facebook page, but I was not expecting to get so many in the first few hours. It’s gone crazy and I’m completely overwhelmed.”

The 37-year-old added: “Now I want to get the campaign out on Twitter too, and if I can reach 50,000 ‘likes’, then I’m going to approach Trevor Hemmings, the football club and the National Football Museum to see what they can do.

“If so many people want a Sir Tom Finney Museum at Deepdale, then I can’t understand why they wouldn’t listen.”

Tributes continue to pour in for the ‘Preston Plumber.’ Former Preston North End youth player and Longridge Town FC chairman Brian Parkinson said: “The club and I send our condolences to Sir Tom Finney’s family and I wish to thank him for the wonderful footballing memories for us older people, who loved watching him play. There were a lot of good times.”

A civic funeral will be held next Thursday at 1pm.