By ANTON RIPPON
WE all have our sporting memories, and it seems that the older we get the more important they become. As they say, it’s an age thing.
Now the remarkable library of books on rugby union, collected over many years by former SJA chair, the late Terry O’Connor, is helping older fans of the game recall their own special days.
Darlington Mowden Park RFC has teamed up with The Sporting Memories Foundation to help those fans look back, and at the centre of the event will be display of memorabilia and images of the game that will include the library that was donated by the family of Terry O’Connor, a founding member of the Rugby Writers Club. The event takes place this Saturday, September 29, at the Northern Echo Arena at Neasham Road ahead of Mowden Park’s National Division One match against Rosslyn Park.
Older fans from community groups and care homes will be joined by younger players from the local club to help recall the visitors’ fond memories of watching or playing rugby.
Terry was the Daily Mail rugby correspondent for more than 30 years, reporting on 11 Lions tours, the first in 1962. Fans will be able to browse books and programmes included in the collection.
Anne Rose, community manager of the Darlington Mowden Park club, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with The Sporting Memories Foundation on this project. We very much look forward to welcoming older members of the community to the Arena to share stories and reminisce about past sporting events.”
Tony Jameson-Allen, co-founder of The Sporting Memories Foundation said: “We’re looking forward to a great day with the club and the local community to celebrate the history and heritage of rugby here in Darlington. Bringing generations together to share stories and record memories has multiple benefits for all those involved, fans will also be able to find out more about the exciting plans we have to bring free, weekly Sporting Memories groups to the area with the team at Mowden Park.”
This Saturday’s event begins at 12.30pm with older fans invited to take in the game against Rosslyn Park which kicks-off at 3pm.