A FOUNDING member of the Warrington Wolves Charitable Foundation has been honoured with a memorial at the Halliwell Jones Stadium in recognition of his ‘unwavering commitment’

Former foundation chair and council leader Terry O’Neill sadly passed away in October last year following a short illness.

As well as his political career spanning three decades, Terry played a key role in setting up the foundation, which provides life changing opportunities to the people of Warrington.

And his legacy will continue after receiving an honorary trusteeship and Heart and Soul Award from the foundation, which sees his footprint added to a south stand memorial.

A small ceremony, due to coronavirus restrictions, was held at the Halliwell Jones Stadium on Friday, attended by Terry’s family and other members of the foundation.

During the event, Peter Astley MBE, who takes over from Terry as chair, said: “You only have to look at the heritage wall here in the south stand to understand why rugby league is so important to this town.

Warrington Guardian:

“It is the lifeblood of Warrington, and you only have to look at the names of people on the footprints to recognise this.

“We all have our heroes on the pitch, but we wouldn’t have those heroes if it wasn’t for the people recognised here, and it gives me real pleasure and honour to take over from Terry as foundation chair.

“We are here to recognise the immense role that Terry has played, and if I can do a tenth of what Terry did to support the foundation and rugby league in the town, I would consider myself to have done a great job.”

Foundation director Neil Kelly also paid tribute to Terry, for his ‘passion and drive’, which has contributed to the charity being recognised as one of the best in the country.

He said: “The Heart and Soul Awards recognise individuals that have contributed greatly to the development of rugby league in Warrington, and each winner is recognised with a footprint in this stand next to our heritage wall.

“Today’s recipient, and rightly so, is Terry O’Neill, who recently passed away.

Warrington Guardian:

Terry O'Neill

“A passionate and driven individual, he was unwavering in his commitment and contribution to the setup of this highly acclaimed foundation, which is recognised as one of the best sporting charities in the country.”

Present at the ceremony was Terry’s wife Cath and children Gemma and Michael, who wished to thank both the club and foundation for organising the event.

“We are so grateful to the club for honouring my dad,” said Gemma.

“He lived for Warrington and Warrington Wolves, and he would be immensely proud of this.

“Peter is doing a fantastic job as chair and we would like to thank Neil for organising this for event for us and for inviting us down.

“It is lovely for us to know that he will never be forgotten. He would be chuffed to bits with this.”