Stars come to pay their respects to Sir Tom

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Preston has probably never seen a star-studded line-up like it.

The great, the good and a host of blasts from the past all turned out to say their personal goodbyes to one of the greatest footballers the world has ever produced.

Jimmy Armfield

Jimmy Armfield

Sir Tom Finney’s funeral was always likely to attract a string of the game’s big names. But the turnout proved the popularity of the man.

Sir Trevor Brooking, the FA’s director of football development, led the official line-up, along with the Football League’s chief executive Shaun Harvey.

England legend Sir Bobby Charlton arrived with Manchester United boss David Moyes – both former managers of Preston North End.

Other past incumbents of the Deepdale hot seat, Craig Brown and Alan Irvine, were also in attendance, along with Tommy Docherty, who had a successful 10-year playing career at PNE and a not-so-successful managerial stay in the eighties.

Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the Professional Footballers’ Association turned up to say his farewell, along with Jimmy Armfield, former Aston Villa chairman Doug Ellis, and ex-PNE players Mark Lawrenson, Gareth Ainsworth (now manager of Wycombe), Howard Kendall, Brian Greenhalgh, Ryan Kidd, George Ross, Tommy Thompson, Oshor Williams, Mike Elwiss and Alex Bruce. World Cup winner Roger Hunt was also there.

The world of politics was represented by Nigel Evans, Sir Robert Atkins, Mark Hendrick and Ben Wallace. Minister of State John Heyes was also on the guest list.

North End owner Trevor Hemmings was there, along with past chairmen Derek Shaw and Bryan Gray.