Belfast Telegraph

Permanent sports museum would be ideal home for unique items

By Amanda Ferguson

The freshly discovered treasure trove of George Best football goodies would make the perfect inclusion in an Ulster sports museum and hall of fame, his family have said.

The late footballing legend's brother-in-law Norman McNarry is an Ulster Sports Museum Association (USMA) committee member and told the Belfast Telegraph he would love to see the recently discovered memorabilia the former Manchester United star had held on to displayed for all his friends and fans to enjoy.

Among the items kept in a London bank vault for more than a decade are Best's first football boots, plus trophies, Northern Ireland caps and football shirts which held a special place in his heart.

Dame Mary Peters is the president of the USMA non-profit body, which has been working on the concept of celebrating our sporting history since 2007.

A travelling sports exhibition of items linked to Northern Ireland has been seen by more than 100,000 people and more than 70 leading sports people have become patrons of the organisation.

Former Belfast Telegraph sports editor, the late Malcolm Brodie, was a member of USMA and very keen on the idea of promoting our world-class achievers, as are a range of people from the sporting world and beyond.

Mr McNarry said: "I've been on the committee virtually since its inception.

"If we can get it up and running I see no reason why there is not room in it for at least some of George's memorabilia."

Norman and his wife Barbara, George's sister, are thrilled to finally learn what was stored in the trunk they took receipt of earlier this month.

They are confident football supporters will want the chance to view the previously unseen items up close.

"George's many, many fans throughout Northern Ireland and the UK will be very interested to see these items," Norman added.

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