Raith Rovers to hold pre-match tribute to Ally Gourlay

Ally Gourlay at Stark's Park promoting the Raith Rovers Hall of Fame in 2014 (FPA)
Ally Gourlay at Stark's Park promoting the Raith Rovers Hall of Fame in 2014 (FPA)

Raith Rovers will pay tribute to its late media officer, Ally Gourlay, before Saturday’s match with Livingston.

He passed away on February 6 after an almost two-year long battle with throat cancer, aged just 53.

Beginning at 2.15pm, a selection of Ally’s favourite songs will be interspersed with former players coming on to the pitch, to pay tribute to Ally and share their memories of him, finishing with a minute’s applause prior to kick off.

Eric Drysedale, director, said that the club wanted to fully acknowledge Ally’s contribution over the years.

He said: “We felt that it was important to show the different sides to Ally and what a colourful character he was.”

“We all know that music was important to him, so we picked a few from the songs Ally was posting on Facebook in the weeks before his death.”

Ally’s three children, Jonny, Matthew and Samantha, will attend and have indicated that they would like to sit in the seats that their dad had sponsored in the South Stand.

“It is quite unusual for someone at a football club from behind the scenes as it were, to generate this much love and admiration, but that is just a testament to the type of man Ally was,” Eric said. “He had a lot of friends and was a huge personality.”

As well as Saturday’s tribute, the matchday programme will include an article written by Jonny Gourlay and an interview with Ally conducted by his friend and fellow Rovers fanatic, John Greer.

Eric said: “This is an opportunity for those that maybe can’t make Ally’s funeral on Monday to come along, whether they are a football fan or not, and pay their respects to Ally.”

Ally’s funeral will take place at Kirkcaldy Crematorium on Monday at 2.15pm.

Ally himself requested family flowers only, but there will be a collection for Maggie’s Fife.