Football legend Viv Anderson MBE has been widely honoured for his achievements, but the former Nottingham Forest star has now received special recognition in his home city.
Today (Thursday, September 24) the former defender unveiled his name on the side of one of the city’s new trams in Clifton, close to his childhood home.
A regular member of the European Cup-winning squad led by Brian Clough – who also has a tram named in his honour – Viv made his debut for Forest in 1974 where he stayed until a move to Arsenal in 1984.
He later played for Manchester United before moving into coaching and business alongside his work as a goodwill ambassador for the FA. Nationally he’s best remembered for blazing a trial for other black players to follow when he made his England debut against Czechoslovakia in 1978.
Nominated for the honour by members of the public, Viv is the latest in a long line of well known Nottingham people to have a tram named after them. A number of the trams recognise local sports stars, reflecting the depth of talent in the city as it bids to become England’s Home of Sport.
It’s a campaign that has won Viv’s support and he said: “I’m Nottingham born and bred and it would be fantastic to have this recognition for our city’s sporting heritage.”
He added: “It’s a tremendous honour to have a tram named after me and I’m delighted that some of the things I managed to achieve during my playing career have been recognised in this way.”
Jamie Swift, NET Marketing Manager, commented: “It’s fitting that Viv should name the tram in the area where he grew up and the extensive park and ride site at Clifton South obviously serves as one of the important destinations on our extended tram network.”
Cllr Jane Urquhart from Nottingham City Council added: “Viv Anderson is a great role model for Clifton youngsters and opened many doors for other black footballers, so I’m delighted that we have named a tram after him. I still have the poster of the cup-winning squad that hung on my bedroom wall, so I very much enjoyed meeting Viv in person.
“Nottingham Forest’s great history is one of the many reasons why I think Nottingham should become England’s Home of Sport.”
Whilst Viv says he will be supporting Nottingham’s Home of Sport bid, which is being made in recognition of the city’s sporting talent and the fact its acclaimed venues host so many internationally recognised events, members of the public can also cast their vote by visiting www.englandhomeofsport.com. Voting closes on 19 October.