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Accrington Stanley trophy tour is well worth the wait for care home residents

Elderly fans had been left disappointed after the title parade was diverted away from their care home

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Care home residents who were left deflated when they missed out on sharing in Accrington Stanley’s title glory were delighted to receive a personal tour of the town’s trophy.

Residents at Moorhead Care Home, Accrington were left feeling let down last month when an unavoidable late change to the Reds’ planned League Two victory parade meant they missed out on a chance to witness the open top bus driving the cup around the town.

Among Stanley supporters beaming after the visit was centenarian Stanley fan Leslie Walker, who had been among wellwishers to line the streets in anticipation of the parade, before police orders on health and safety grounds put a dampener on their promotion party.

However, after they were contacted by Janine Maher, niece of one of the home’s residents Patrick Maher, 90, the club asked employee Keil Clitheroe to take the coveted League Two trophy round to the home, on Whalley Road.

Janine said her uncle was thrilled to get his hands on the silverware.

She said: “It’s great that the club have done this.

“It was very disappointing for my uncle and many more of the residents who had been out for around an hour waiting to applaud the players and staff and see the trophy. We know what happened was beyond the club’s control but it was really nice of them to send the trophy over. Uncle Pat was thrilled to handle it and have his picture taken.”

Keil was greeted by dozens of residents all keen to get their hands on the trophy. There was laughter as it was passed around the main lounge, and staff staged a mock ‘trophy lift’ to cheers all round.

Leslie Walker, 101

Leslie Walker, 101, feared he had missed the chance to share the party.

He said: “I didn’t think I’d see it properly after last time. The trophy’s a lot heavier than I thought and it’s grand to see it.”

Jayne Procter, deputy manager of Moorhead Care Home, said: “Everyone here wishes to say thanks to Keil and all at Stanley for arranging this. It was quite an effort to get the residents out for the parade in May and I have to admit it was a big anti-climax after waiting all that time. But this has more than made up for that.”

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Keil said the visit had been ‘a pleasure’. He added: “Like our owner says our attitude is that the trophy does not belong to the club but to all our supporters and to the people of Accrington.”