Special item donated for big auction


A bust of Brian Clough, owned and donated by his family, was the star item of a big internet auction to raise money for a statue of the Master Manager in Nottingham. The Clough family gave the statue fund committee a bust of Cloughie which was one of the first to be made. Bids for all the auction items totalled nearly £3,000.

The bust, pictured above, was part of a ten-day Grand Internet Auction on ebay, ending at 0600 on September 28th, 2006. It was sold for £770. The auction featured a host of memorabilia donated by famous people. All proceeds are going to the statue fund in Nottingham.

Among the other auction items was a rare banner displayed at the memorial service in Nottingham (sold for £521); a framed Old Big 'Ead green sweatshirt signed by Forest legends and Brian Clough's widow Barbara (sold for £350); a signed football designed by Nottingham fashion king Sir Paul Smith (£270); a football donated by Forest legend Stuart Pearce and signed by his squad at Manchester City (£51); a framed tribute to European champions Barcelona, signed by manager Frank Rijkaard (£73); and a shirt donated by Bolton boss Sam Allardyce and signed by Big Sam and his squad (£195).

The resin bust of Cloughie is a miniature version of the one in the reception of Nottingham Forest's City Ground. It was made by the Nottinghamshire sculptor Gordon Brown. The replica version came in a special presentation box and had number 5 printed on the bottom to show it was one of the first few to be made.

Rich Fisher from the statue fund said he was delighted with the success of the auction. "It has raised a tremendous amount and has exceeded all our expectations. It's an important step closer to our goal of £60,000. We are extremely grateful that Brian Clough's family offered to donate the bust for the auction. The Clough family have given their support to the fund from the beginning and it means a great deal to all the volunteers involved."

There were eleven other items auctioned at the same time as the bust. They included an original silver-plated tankard from the 1980 League Cup Final, donated by former Nottingham Forest secretary Ken Smales (sold for £205) and a dart board signed by the former host of TV's Bullseye, Jim Bowen, who is a big Clough fan (sold for £60).

Jim Bowen signs dartboard

"Brian Clough was a legend," said Jim, who is pictured signing the dartboard during a personal appearance in Nottingham. In tribute to the Master Manager, Jim has added the words 'He was a legend' to the back of the dartboard. Another item featuring special signatures was a framed Old Big 'Ead sweatshirt. The sweater, made for the statue fund, was signed at a Gala Fund-Raising Dinner in June 2006.

Framed signed souvenir

Only two of these special framed souvenirs exist. This is Number One. The sweater was signed by Reds legends John McGovern, John Robertson and John O'Hare, former Cloughie player Duncan McKenzie (who was guest speaker) and Cloughie's widow Barbara. The framed item, a real collector's piece, also has an original ticket and menu cover from the dinner.

As mentioned, top names supporting the auction included Barcelona manager Frank Rijkaard and Nottingham fashion guru Sir Paul Smith. Rijkaard's personally signed photo was part of a framed tribute to the European champions, which features a Barca training shirt.

Signed Barcelona tribute

The auction featured a special football (pictured below) designed and personally signed by Sir Paul Smith. It came in a designer black bag with original Paul Smith label.

Sir Paul Smith designer football

Other auction items included an Old Big 'Ead green sweatshirt signed by the current Forest squad including manager Colin Calderwood (and fans' favourite David Johnson, who has now retired); a Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club shirt signed by the squad (sold for £70) and a signed Blackburn Rovers shirt (£51).

Another rare item was a Brian Clough banner, displayed at the memorial service in Nottingham. It featured a picture of the Great Man alongside the quote: "I want no epitaphs of profound history. I contributed, I hope they would say that, and I hope somebody liked me." It is the only banner of that size with that quote.