Street named in honour of boxing legend

Date published: 02 February 2018

A street in Collyhurst has been named in honour of Chadderton-based Brian Hughes for his lifetime of work in putting the city's boxers on the map and for his work in the local community.

When the city council canvassed the local community, more than 6,000 people signed a petition to support the idea.

Hughes was born and raised in Collyhurst.

Hughes was a keen amateur boxer, who founded the Collyhurst Lads Club in 1964.

Within two years of opening, the club had won the first of over 30 National Schoolboy titles, National Junior ABA titles, England Schoolboy Internationals, Junior England Internationals, Senior champions and internationals.

He was once dubbed ‘the Pied Piper of Collyhurst’ for the positive impact he had on the young people in the area.

He was also described as ‘the Godfather of Manchester boxing’ before he finally hung up his gloves in 2011.

In the early 1970's the Collyhurst Lads Club was demolished and the club moved to its present premises in Moston.

Hughes achieved even greater success by the end of his 50-year association with boxing, producing several British, European and World boxing champions, including Robin Reid, Michael Gomez and Anthony Farnell.

Former boxing hopeful Tony Feeley, who lived close to Hughes during his younger days, said: “This is well-deserved tribute for a proud Mancunian who loved Collyhurst.

“He taught me to box as a teenager at the Collyhurst & Moston Lads Club but unfortunately I wasn't dedicated enough and didn't stick at it.

“I can't think of a more genuine, honest and well-respected person. The world would be a much better place with more people like Brian Hughes.”