Since the launch of the project to bring Brunton Park’s Sunset Suite to life, using fan-donated memorabilia, more and more supporters have been getting in touch to let us know about items they feel may be of use to help with the fan-driven initiative.
The project, a brainchild of Carlisle United Supporters’ Groups (CUSG), took a significant step forward at the end of last month when the first batch of items, which included shirts, programmes and photographs, took pride of place on the walls of the popular match day bar.
The unveiling event, attended by United legends Hughie McIlmoyle, Billy Rafferty and Les O'Neill, was followed up last week by a visit from BBC Radio Cumbria’s Breakfast Show host Mike Zeller and his mum Margaret, who had kindly donated framed photographs which became part of the first display.
Explaining the reasons behind the donation, Mrs Zeller said: “The photographs originally belonged to my father-in-law, Harry Zeller. When my husband John died, I was looking through some of his things and I came across them at the back of a cupboard.
“My husband hadn’t done anything with them, and I knew that I wouldn’t really be putting them to any kind of use either. The thing was that I knew they were too good to waste, because they go all the way back to 1908.
“I spoke to Simon [Clarkson] and Adrian [Bell] to see if they would like them for the club, and when they said ‘yes’ I decided to get them framed so they could go on the walls here in the Sunset Suite.
“The only caveat to handing them over was that I made them promise not to stick them back in a cupboard, because that’s where they’ve been for the last 50 years!”
“I’m very pleased to see them hanging here now,” she continued. “My father-in-law was a very keen Carlisle supporter, as are Michael and I, and he used to live in River Street, not far from here, which meant he could get to every game.
“If I’m being honest, my husband was more of a rugby man, which was fine, but the donation is really in memory of both of them, which I know they would be very pleased with.
“The thing I’m quite proud of is that an awful lot of people knew my father-in-law, so seeing his name up there on the photograph beside John’s name is really quite special for me. It’s a nice acknowledgement for both of them.”
CUSG chairman Simon Clarkson said: “The displays have had a really positive reaction and it’s been good to have more fans get in touch to say they’d like to help.
“We welcome that, and we ask other supporters and members of the public to keep us in mind if they do come across any Carlisle United related items of any kind.
“It’s things like shirts, signed shirts, photographs, cuttings, programmes ... quite literally anything that will help us to expand the project to other areas of the stadium, or even to start off a really good club archive.
“As we’ve said before, hopefully this is something which will just continue to grow and grow.”
If you have items you would like to donate please contact CUSG on email@example.com or via Twitter using the tag @CarlisleUnitedSG.