Fitzy can be seen at most Stockport County matches, a larger than life character who everyone loves to speak to. He is an engaging character who has spent his life following the club he loves up and down the country watching his team.
Fans young and old know him and he knows most of them. When in his company you get a sense of value and warmth. Listening to him for 5 minutes is an event in itself.
A a key figure of the volunteer group Help the Hatters.
Help the Hatters is a volunteer group that offers practical support to the club and caries out tasks such as cleaning the stadium after matches, painting the stairwells and ensuring the facilities are clean and safe for spectators. I recently attended a post match clean up and was I was amazed by the military organisation and purpose these volunteers had in how they set about what seemed to be a massive task. Although in my own thoughts I always felt that Fitzy was the figure head for this group, when I put this too him he politely disagreed referring to the great people who make HTH work.
As humble as he is proud.
When asking him to elaborate on the achievements of HTH he spoke passionately about helping the club engage with the children in the community and highlights that his real pride is when he sees the areas of the ground designated for families full of local school children often watching football for the first time.
HTH are also involved in the curation of a Stockport County museum where children can come and see memorabilia from days past. It’s hard not to feel like being in the bedroom of a teenage superman.
When asking Fitzy about his motivations he pointed to a book on his kitchen table which was about the 1946 film ‘It a Wonderful Life’. Always be kind to others he told me was one of the rules that he lives his life by.
When speaking to him another huge sense of pride for him are the achievements and love he has for his family. One of his grandchildren who is a member of the Stockport band ‘Blossoms’ who’s Third album entered the charts at number 1.
Going forward I will engage further with members of Help the Hatters in order to gain a further insight into this group.