A HOST of local football heroes were inducted into the York City Football Development Hall of Fame at York Racecourse, writes Matthew Naylor.

More than 150 of York’s finest sporting figures joined former York City striker Iain Dunn and ex-Minsterman goalkeeper Andy Leaning for what will now be an annual fixture.

Among the people to be honoured in the Greatest Players category of the Hall of Fame was current Selby Town manager Jimmy Reid, who spoke of his pride at still being recognised for his contribution to Rowntrees in the 1980s.

“It was very humbling for so many people you played with and against to vote for me,” said Reid.

“Rowntrees gave me some of the best years of my life in football. I can barely remember what happened yesterday but I could talk all day sharing my memories of the club.”

The other recipients of ‘greatest player’ honours were Riccall United’s Billy Bills as well as the former Osbaldwick trio of Alan Smith, Ian Wilson and Dave Fogg, who also had a spell with Melrose.

In a huge night of awards for Osbaldwick, their 1983 to 1993 campaigns earned them the Greatest Team title.

Other recipients of awards included John Reynolds, of Rowntrees and Dringhouses, who picked up the Greatest Goalkeeper crown.

The late Lol Cussons earned the honour of best referee, while Roy Ellwood, president of the York & District FA, won an administrator accolade.

Jim Collis was recognised for his achievements at the head of Rowntrees and later Punch Bowl by being handed the Greatest Manager honour.

Brian and Ian Wilson scooped the Greatest Father and Son award for their contributions to Dringhouses and Osbaldwick respectively.

The unorthodox crown of Greatest Character in the York area went to John Collins, the bubbly mechanic and current manager of York RI.

Said organiser Neil Sanderson: “John is just such an enthusiastic and funny guy that it was a pleasure to present him with this award.

“I rang him the week before just for a quick chat to tell him he was going to win the award – an hour and a half later we were still on the phone chatting away and sharing memories.

“That’s the kind of very talkative and likeable person John is.”