Sheffield Wednesday: John Pearson hails success of Owls’ big reunion

Glenn Whelan meets fans at the Sheffield Wednesday Community Programme's reunion of the 2005 promotion winning Owls side

Glenn Whelan meets fans at the Sheffield Wednesday Community Programme's reunion of the 2005 promotion winning Owls side

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In the at least eight years since Chris Brunt and Glenn Whelan last played for the Owls, it is fair to say each man has enjoyed a decent amount of success.

Premier League regulars and one of the first names on the team sheet for their respective national teams, Whelan and Brunt have flourished since departing Hillsborough.

But clearly Wednesday still holds a special place in the heart of both men, as shown by their effort to make last weekend’s reunion of the 2005 promotion winning side.

“All the lads made a big effort to turn up for the event which showed how much they wanted to be there,” former Owls forward John Pearson told the Star.

“Glenn Whelan flew in from Ireland and we had lads coming down from Scotland.

“Chris Brunt played on the Saturday for West Brom and they lost in the cup so they ended up being called in for training on the Sunday. He raced up here to make the event.

“Everyone wanted to be a part of it, even those that didn’t turn up who all had good reasons.

“Paul Sturrock couldn’t make it but he was desperate to do the interview we showed on the big screen.

“I think it shows what the club means to people who have been here before.”

Pearson helped to organise the event at Hillsborough as part of his role with the Sheffield Wednesday Community Programme.

The reunion dinner was the latest event in the Community Programme’s calendar, aiming to raise funds for the work the organisation does around the city.

Pearson said: “We’re a separate entity to the club so we do our own fundraising.

“We organise events like the reunion to raise much needed funds for our work and it’s been a great success.

“We reach out to 100,000 people with the work that we do so we need a lot of funding.

“The former players giving up their time for us is really appreciated and David Garrido as well from Sky Sports who hosted the night and has recently become one of our patrons.”

The latest dinner built on the success of the Class of ‘84 reunion organised by the Community Programme to mark the 30th anniversary of the Division Two promotion winning team.

In the summer, the Programme they will work with their counterparts at Sheffield United to organise a charity fun day surrounding the annual Reds vs Blues match which features former players and celebrity supporters from both clubs.

And Pearson is plotting the Community Programme’s next big event.

He said: “It’s going to have to be something special to follow the reunion dinner but I’m sure we’ll have something up our sleeve.”