Is this the most Mackem house in Sunderland?

The backyard of Gary Crighton's house in Carley Road, Southwick.
The backyard of Gary Crighton's house in Carley Road, Southwick.
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It’s a case of ‘home and haway’ for a Sunderland-supporting grandad who has turned his house into a shrine to his favourite football club.

Black Cats fan Gary Crighton, 46, started decking out his home in Carley Road, Sunderland, with everything SAFC-related when he was given a large club crest as a gift about five years ago.

Gary Crighton with grandaughter Olivia.

Gary Crighton with grandaughter Olivia.

What started with bits and pieces at the front of his house gradually built up and now his entire backyard is now a sea of red and white.

The grandad-of-three said: “We started putting up things and it’s gradually built up over about five years.

“Everyone takes pictures when they walk past to go to the match.

“It started when I did a buffet for somebody and they gave us the big Sunderland crest that’s now on the front wall.

Everyone takes pictures when they walk past to go to the match

Gary Crighton

“It’s all mainly presents from various people, I haven’t spent very much money at all.”

Ironically, Gary, who lives with daughter Laura, 20, has been unable to attend recent games at the Stadium of Light, due to an accident two years ago.

The lifelong supporter finds it difficult to sit for long periods since breaking his back, falling from a ladder, while cleaning his windows.

Keen to get back to the stands, however, he has now ordered his season card for the coming season.

He added: “I’ve been a Sunderland supporter for 40 years, but I haven’t been to a match for the last 18 months to two years, since breaking my back.

“I’ve got my season ticket now, to try it out. Hopefully we’ll stay in the Premier League.”

* Do you know a house that’s more of a shrine to SAFC? Contact the newsdesk on 501 7326.