By Will Bradley
Loyal football fan Harry Newton, 26, will watch his 500th Salisbury football match on March 25 against Hereford FC.
Popular Harry, who lives in Dinton, has cerebral palsy and is confined to a wheelchair, yet still travels to matches at home and away to watch Salisbury FC. He also loyally supported the now defunct Salisbury City FC before they folded in 2014.
“The milestone is a combined 500 games watching both Salisbury City FC and Salisbury FC,” Harry explained to Valley News.
Harry was a spectator on October 25, 2008, his first game, when Salisbury played Team Bath at Twerton Park.
“It’s not been without challenges. I sometimes get frustrated, but I would like to pay a massive tribute to my mum and dad, and to the loyal supporters who have helped me,” Harry said.
Harry has also been encouraged by many current and former Salisbury players.
“I’ve established a very close relationship with the Salisbury players. I also keep in touch with lots of ex-players and managers,” he said.
Harry is planning a special celebration to commemorate his 500th match at the Raymond McEnhill Stadium.
“Salisbury FC has plans for the day, and I’m looking forward to the game against Hereford,” Harry added.
Faith plays an important role in Harry’s life, and the loyal fan is praying for promotion this season, with Salisbury FC currently in the play-offs.
“I hope and pray we go up this season! I’ve experienced many highs and lows watching Salisbury FC, but I’ve always kept a sense of perspective.
“Salisbury FC will be a match for anyone in the play-offs this season, especially at home, and we will get the stadium rocking,” he said.
For many disabled fans, following their team is a massive challenge, but this has not hampered this loyal supporter.
“I would appeal to anyone, especially disabled fans, to take the plunge and support non-league football. I’ve made friends for life here.
“I remember the FA Cup runs against Sheffield United and Grimsby and have fond memories of the three promotions in two years under Darrell Clarke. I’ll be here for another 500 games,” Harry confidently stated.
Fans favourite Callum Hart has played for both Salisbury City FC and Salisbury FC, and he thanked Harry for his loyal support.
“It’s a fantastic achievement by Harry. I remember when Harry would watch us in training on a Friday and support the lads.
“To get to 500 games is an amazing achievement and shows the loyal fans we have at this club,” Callum said.
Fans will have to move fast as it’s an ‘all ticket’ match for the Salisbury FC Evo-Stik Southern League Division One South & West match at home to Hereford on March 25.
To join Harry at the game visit www.salisburyfc.co.uk for ticket information, or phone 01722 776655.