One of Sir Tom Finney’s 76 England caps is to go up for auction in aid of the Sir Richard Arkwright Statue Appeal.
The campaign to build a statue of Preston’s forgotten father of the Industrial Revolution began last month.
Sir Richard, who invented the first mechanised spinning machine and pioneered the factory system in Britain, is to be immortalised in bronze if supporters can raise £100,000.
Wilf Boardman, chairman of the appeal, donated the cap, which Sir Tom earned during a victory over Denmark in Copenhagen in 1955.
Around 55,000 fans watched Walter Winterbottom’s side run out 5-1 winners, with goals from Don Revie, Nat Lofthouse and Geoff Bradford.
Tony Slater, appeal organiser, said: “My great friend and co-founder of the appeal Wilf Boardman has very kindly at great sacrifice to himself donated Sir Tom Finney’s cap towards the funds.
“Bidders are not only contributing to this appeal, but they will have a lasting memory and legacy to pass on to their children or grandchildren - a cap from the legendary great.”
Arkwright was born in 1732 and was living at Arkwright House in Lennox Street in 1768 when he developed the spinning frame, which mechanised the previously hand-operated spinning process and revolutionised textiles. The only visible memorial in Preston to the world’s first industrialist is a small blue plaque on the wall of Arkwright House, hidden away in Stoneygate.
Organisers of the appeal are to make bids to the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Arts Council, but need help from individuals and organisations.
For more details, or to make a bid on the cap, contact Mr Slater at firstname.lastname@example.org, on 01772 200181 or 07703475258.