A PERMANENT memorial has been unveiled at a club in honour of the steward who served its members.
Albert Foster helped run Acre Rigg Social Club in Peterlee with his partner Denise Brown for more than two years before he died of a heart attack in April.
The death of the 69-year-old from Easington Lane left his family and the bar’s patrons devastated but determined to make a difference to the lives of others.
Fund-raising efforts have already seen them pledge £2,150 to the British Heart Foundation, thanks to a sell-out night of entertainment which included a tombola backed by businesses in the town.
Now a plaque dedicated to Albert has also been unveiled inside the venue in Lowhills Road in tribute to his dedication to his stewardship.
Before he took on the role, he had been a miner at collieries including Murton, Hetton and Eppleton and worked for National Express. He also enjoyed refereeing football matches.
Denise, 49, who had been Albert’s partner for a decade, said: “It was a complete shock when he died. We’d been looking after my grandson and he went out to lock up the bar, came back, went to bed and then in the early hours he had a heart attack.
“We’d only come back from Vegas a fortnight before.
“I think he would be delighted with what we’ve done.
“I couldn’t get around everybody on the night, but what they helped raise was absolutely fantastic, and I’d like to thank them.”
The cash pot was also boosted with a £20 donation from Shotton Officials’ Club.
Albert was dad to Alyson Pearson, 36, of Blackhall, and Paul, 37, who lives in South Hetton.
Denise added Albert had doted on her two-year-old grandson Oliver, and her daughter Claire Atkinson, 25, who lives in Houghton, and was a good friend to Claire’s husband Colin, 27.
She also thanked her sister Tracey Wilson, 46, and club members for helping her through the grief of losing Albert.
Club chairman George Lloyd added: “He is a great miss to the club and he worked very hard for our members and staff.”