TRIBUTES have been paid to one of Holyhead’s greatest ever goal-scorers who died recently.

Tommy Welsh, who held legendary status on Anglesey thanks to his sensational career during the 1950s and 60s, passed away aged 90 leaving behind a lasting legacy that has stood the test of time.

Mr Welsh played his first game for the Holyhead Town in the halcyon days of post war football via the old Welsh League North in August 1953 and enjoyed a glittering career with the Harbourmen before eventually retiring during the 1964/65 season.

He was born in Belfast on St Patrick’s Day in 1929 and was to become the North Wales Coast’s record goal scorer putting up the staggering total of more than 630 goals, with 570 of these with Holyhead – the town he has lived in for most of his life. The balance of these notched up with an earlier spell at Blaenau Ffestiniog and latterly with Colwyn Bay and Bethesda.

Don Spendlove of Cheshire league, Rhyl, had amassed 629 in his spell with the Lilywhites at Belle Vue where they played, but Mr Welsh managed to top this feat and secure a record that has lived through the ages so far.

Gareth Davies, press officer at Holyhead Hotspur, said: “This tribute will fall short of giving full justice to our hero – except to say we offer extreme sympathy and extend condolences to his proud family.

“From all of us, Tommy Welsh may have gone up to the big man in the sky, but our memories of him will never die.”

Amongst his career highlights was a standout performance in a North Wales Coast Challenge Cup victory over Caernarfon Town at Farrar Road in Bangor, where Mr Welsh netted a hat-trick in front of more than 6,000 supporters.

Mr Welsh was also selected to the North Wales Coast FA squad for a clash against Scottish Juniors, and his showing in the game saw him offered contracts at West Bromwich Albion, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Doncaster Rovers, with Tottenham Hotspur also showing a keen interest in the striker.

“Tommy turned them down as he had fallen in love with the town of Holyhead and its people,” added Davies.

“All this and the remarkable fact he had never kicked a ball in anger, until joining the Royal Artillery in 1947 when he was in his late teens.”