Gentry Day again for PNE fans

Preston North End fans on Gentry Day at Brentford in 2014
Preston North End fans on Gentry Day at Brentford in 2014
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It will soon be that time of the year when Preston North End supporters don bowler hats and smart suits for an away game.

This season’s Gentry Day will coincide with the derby clash against Bolton Wanderers at the Macron Stadium on March 12.

The annual event is held in honour of those people connected to the club, who have passed away over the past 12 months.

North End supporters were christened ‘The Gentry’ by former Preston manager Alan Ball Snr in the early 1970s.

After an away game at Plymouth, Ball was asked by the Press for a comment about the level of support that day.

Ball said: “Preston fans are the best, they are the gentry.”

The comment from their manager of the time struck a chord with supporters and it led to some of them wearing bowler hats, striped suits and ties for games.

The craze faded over time, but it was brought back to prominence in 2005 when the Preston Supporters’ Group arranged the ‘Return of the Gentry’ in honour of John Tracey – an original member of the Gentry – after his death.

That took place at Queens Park Rangers, and it has been an annual event since 2008.

Charlton, Newcastle, Hull and Sheffield Wednesday have all been venues for Gentry Day and last season’s event took place at Oakwell for the match against Barnsley.

It had initially been scheduled to take place on the first anniversary of Sir Tom Finney’s death on February 14.

However, North End’s progress to the fifth round of the FA Cup and a home date with Manchester United two days later, saw plans rearranged.

Preston’s travelling support has been impressive this season, with big followings at a number of games.

There is expected to be a large away contingent for this fixture, PNE’s first competitive trip to Bolton since August 2000, and therefore supporters are urged to buy their tickets early.

Tickets for the game against Bolton went on sale yesterday.

The Lilywhites have been allocated 1,680 tickets in the lower tier, and 2,079 in the upper tier of the Franking Sense South Stand behind the goal. The lower tier tickets will be sold first, which is at the request of the Trotters.

Tickets can be purchased via the ticket hotline by calling 0344 856 1966, online at MyPNE.Com or in person at the ticket office at Deepdale.

Prices for this game are as follows: Lower Tier: Adult £25, Over 65 and Under-23s £18, Under-18s £10.

Upper Tier: Adult £28, Over 65 and Under-23s £20, Under-18s £10.

There are 10 pairs of tickets for wheelchair users situated on the South Stand raised platform.

These are priced at £25 for adults and £10 for concessions, with the carer ticket free of charge.

Ambulant disabled tickets are available in lower tier only, and tickets are priced at the relevant age band, with the carer ticket free of charge and are available only until the lower tier is sold out.

All supporters with a concessions ticket must show identification at the turnstiles to gain access to the ground.

Coach travel is also available for this fixture and is priced at £10 per person. Coaches will leave both Deepdale and Leyland at 1.15pm.