And here’s what people who have had a sneak preview have said:
“Moving, sad and uplifting. Everyone should know the legend of Jack Leslie.” Matt Barlow, Daily Mail “Inspiring and important. An extraordinary life story.” Viv Anderson MBE “An evocative and gripping portrait of a remarkable football pioneer.” Debbie Hewitt, Chair of the FA “A beautifully written and fitting tribute for an unfairly overlooked legend.” Josh Widdicombe
SOUVENIR MATCH DAY PROGRAMME
Plymouth Argyle FC has kindly given us a number of copies of the commemorative match programme from the Accrington Stanley game. With a striking front cover, the FA posthumous honorary cap statement and 15 pages about Jack and the campaign it is a fantastic souvenir.
1. To raise funds for and build a statue of Jack Leslie at Home Park where he played professionally for Plymouth Argyle.
2. To promote and share Jack’s story.
3. To celebrate diversity and combat racism.
WHO WAS JACK LESLIE?
Jack Leslie should have been England’s first black player but when the selectors discovered his heritage, his name would never appear on the team sheet.
Below is the story in brief but if you want to find out more please read the JACK’S STORY page where there are several useful articles.
Jack was an outstanding player who joined Plymouth Argyle from Barking in 1921 and scored 137 goals in a long and illustrious career which ended in 1934.
Leslie was picked for the England national team to face Ireland in 1925 and was told by his manager that he’d been called up. But after this selection, his name mysteriously disappeared from the team sheet, seemingly because of the colour of his skin.
So, not only was Jack an incredible player for his club, but his is also a story of great national and historical significance. It’s also one that sadly still resonates as racist incidents in football and in wider society continue to this day.
The incredible statue of Jack Leslie by Andy Edwards was unveiled on Friday 7th October. It was an emotional ceremony for everyone involved, especially Jack’s family. The event was topped off by the award of a posthumous honorary cap to Jack by the FA on the same day…
We are so grateful to everyone who attended, most of whom donated or supported us in many different ways. It was incredible for the campaign, Plymouth Argyle and, most importantly, Jack’s three granddaughters and wider family.
You can continue to donate on our CROWDFUNDER PAGE to help us share Jack’s story as we take it into schools and organisations.
We are a group of like-minded football fans who feel passionately that the story of Jack Leslie should be more widely known. More about us here.
His former team, Plymouth Argyle, has now taken steps to honour Leslie, naming the new boardroom in the Mayflower Grandstand at Home Park after Jack. This has inspired us to keep his story alive, having been so sadly overlooked for many years.
The Jack Leslie CampaignDonate to the Jack Leslie Campaign legacy and education fund