WINNINGTON Park Rugby Club members paid an emotional farewell to Mike Lapworth.

Current Covid-19 restrictions prevented their presence at the funeral, so Mike, a club record holder, came to see his friends instead with social distancing observed.

"Mike was regarded a legend at our club, of which he had been a member for over 45 years," said Paul Dean, Winnington Park chairman.

"Seeing as we couldn’t attend his funeral we asked his wife Stella if it was possible that the funeral cars could make a detour to our club for one last farewell on his way to the crematorium.

"This was agreed by the funeral directors and Mike did indeed make one last visit.

Northwich Guardian: Northwich Guardian:

"The drive had a guard of honour of WPRFC flags, his playing shirt was on display and over 110 members of our rugby family turned out to see him on his way.

"A round of applause that lasted well over three minutes was a very moving gesture to such a well-loved man.

"Mike still holds the record as the oldest player ever to play in the first team at the age of 48 – he truly was as strong as an ox."