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Aston Villa lead tributes to founding father of the Football League William McGregor

Villa lead tributes to founding father of the Football League

Respects: Chairman of the Football League, Lord Mawhinney

Respects: Chairman of the Football League, Lord Mawhinney

Aston Villa will pay fitting tribute to the founder of the Football League this week after supporters and officials of the Birmingham club combined to mark the centenary of the passing of William McGregor.

The club has commissioned the restoration of McGregor”s grave and are planning a commemorative servicewith several influential figures from the world of football this Tuesday.

Proceedings will commence at 2pm at St Mary”s Church, Handsworth, with officials from the 12 founding clubs due to attend.

Current Football League chairman and current Everton president, Sir Philip Carter, will be among the guests at the open service.

The Lord Mayor of Birmingham is also likely to be present. Reflecting the fact that McGregor was a devout member of the Congregational Church, Rev Dr Kirsty Thorpe, leader of theUnited Reformed Church, will be among several clergy who will help conduct the service.

Lord Brian Mawhinney, president of the Football League, will pay tribute to his organisation”s founder and a further address will be given by Peter Lupson, co-author of a recently published biography.

At the end of the service the Bishop of Aston will lead the congregation to McGregor”s graveside for prayers, after which Aston Villa will host a VIP reception at Villa Park.