The footballing community said a last farewell to a North-East legend this week.

The funeral of former Hartlepool United centre-forward and non-league goal machine Terry Turnbull took place at Stockton Crematorium on Wednesday, November 30.

Born in Tilery, Stockton in 1945, Terry Turnbull was known as’ Big T’ because of his no-nonsense centre forward style of play.

Signed by Billy Horner from non-league Crook Town, ‘Big T’ made an immediate impact, scoring four goals in 14 appearances for Pools during the 1976/77 season.

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He had a great reputation as a fearsome striker, and at the time held the record for the oldest footballer, aged 32, to score on his debut.

The Pools squad at that time included players like Malcolm Poskett, Peter Creamer, Billy Ayre, Wayne Goldthorpe, Barry Endean and goalkeeper Graham Richardson.

It was during that period when Horner was bringing non-league players to the club and players such as Bobby Scaife and Malcolm Poskett (both Whitby), Billy Ayre (Scarborough) and blending them with more experienced professionals such as Alan Goad, Eric McMordie (Middlesbrough) and Chris Simpkins (Huddersfield).

Terry delighted in scoring on his debut aged 32 in the League Cup defeat against Huddersfield at the Vic in a 2 -1 defeat for Pools.

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Terry’s son, Lee, is currently CEO and Acting Chairman at Scunthorpe United. He said: “My Dad truly loved his time at Pools and we also loved watching him as we sat in the Mill House Stand. He was super proud to pull on his Pools blue and white shirt and whenever I go back to Victoria Park I can still picture him celebrating after scoring.

“Dad was in his early 30s at the time he was playing for Pools and he never saw that as an obstacle - he just wanted to get the Pools shirt on and play for the team.

“Big T had a tremendous presence on the pitch and wherever he played fans would love to see his passion and wholehearted style as they knew that he would always give 100% commitment to the cause. He was known for being difficult to mark as he was supremely fit and powerful in his number nine shirt.

“Dad would often go back to watch Pools in the following years and he would always be looking out for the result so there is no question that the season 76/77 was truly memorable for the Turnbull family and our journeys to Clarence Road.”

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Terry left the club in 1977 and would then go on to be a prolific scorer for Gateshead and Whitby Town.

He also played briefly in India alongside fellow ‘Poolies’ George Potter and Graham Richardson before a crowd of 100,000 with thousands more locked outside when he played for Crook Town in Calcutta during a touring game

Terry was married to Carol for 59 years and they were devoted to each other.

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