Is there a doctor in the house? There is now!
Pat Godbold received an honorary doctorate from the University of Suffolk this afternoon for her 64 years service to Ipswich Town.
Former Blues, Mick Mills and Bryan Hamilton, along with ex-Town chairman David Sheepshanks, were in attendance, along with Pat’s family, to see her honoured.
A Town fan as a child, Pat became secretary to manager Scott Duncan at the Club in 1954 and went on to work for every Blues manager, including Sir Alf Ramsey and Sir Bobby Robson as well as George Burley before retiring from full-time work at Portman Road in 1997.
She has continued to work part-time at the Club and in 2004 received a medal from the Football Association for 50 years service to football.
Pat is now the Club’s archivist, looking after memorabilia and answering history enquiries, as well as helping to organise former Town players’ annual reunions.
“I was amazed when I received the letter from the University,” she said.
“I am very pleased, proud and honoured. I was brought up in Ipswich on a council estate and left a Secondary Modern School with no qualifications. I am humbled to receive this; it is beyond my wildest dreams. I would like to wish those graduating, a happy and successful future.”
Former Town skipper Mick added: “I’m very proud of Pat today. She took a job all those years ago that possibly, in her eyes, wasn’t going to be a very attractive job but then it became more than a job.
“In many respects, it was like head of a family and that is the role she took on.
“She worked for some very famous managers, Sir Alf Ramsey and Sir Bobby Robson. She was there many, many years and literally took over looking after the young players that came to the Club. She won’t mind me saying that she made the most of an ordinary job and made it very special.”
Former Town striker and ex Northern Ireland boss, Bryan, who works with Pat in arranging the players’ reunion dinners, said: “I’ve known Pat for many years, a very long time, nearly 50 years.
“She has been an amazing lady at the Football Club and certainly an amazing lady for the players.
“She loves the Club and she likes to help people. She has been like a second mum to us all. I am absolutely thrilled for her, to be recognised in this way - for the work she’s done.”