A NEW Marston sports pavilion will be dedicated to a hard-working parish clerk.

Members of the Old Marston Parish Council voted to name the pavilion after Roy Garner, who worked as the clerk for half a century.

But they still need to raise funds for the £700,000 project to build a new pavilion in Old Marston in Oxford.

Parish council chairman Charlie Haynes said: “We decided that we should name it the Roy Garner Sports Pavilion.

“He got to the age of 80 and he thought that he would step down. We wanted to thank him for the loyalty he showed the parish over the years.

“He did a tremendous job and he has lived in the village all his life.”

Mr Garner, 85, who was the parish clerk from 1956 until June 2006, said he was very proud and honoured to hear the news.

The former assistant treasurer at Vale of White Horse District Council remembered the original pavilion being built 40 years ago.

Mr Garner said: “The parish was not quite so heavily populated in 1960.

“My job was to help people. If they wanted to put some clubs on the recreation ground, we would look at the council budget and work out if the council has the money to do it.”

The parish council has clubbed together with football team Marston Saints to replace the old pavilion at Boults Lane.

The proposed state-of-the-art sports pavilion, with changing rooms and parish council offices, could cost £610,000 plus VAT.

Mr Garner said: “They have definitely been working for this for a long time.”

The parish council plans to put in £75,000 towards the proposed pavilion and will be applying for loans for a further £200,000 to go towards it.

The club has hired a professional fundraiser to apply for further grants for other funds.

Mr Haynes said: “The new pavilion will be three times the size with four changing rooms.

“We are going to have a parish council office there so we can hold meetings.

“We’ve got teams that have done exceptionally well for many years. The pavilion is in a real state. We want to upgrade the facilities so that the teams can grow.”

He said the council had applied for a grant from Sports England but was turned down and would approach more fundraisers.

The Old Marston community has worked for more than five years on the new pavilion project. Famous former players include England star Martin Keown and Celtic first-team coach Garry Parker.

Marston Saints vice-chairman Eddy Aldworth said: “We still need a new pavilion desperately. We are still applying for funds but it is a slow process.”