Former Hartlepool United favourite tracked down after fan’s appeal

Mike Squires (left) and Darren Knowles (right)
Mike Squires (left) and Darren Knowles (right)

A popular former Hartlepool United footballer has been reunited with many of his best memories from his time at Victoria Park in the blue and white of Pools.

Right back Darren Knowles was a fans favourite at The Vic during his four years with the club from 1997 to 2001 when he played alongside players such as Joe Allon, Paul Baker, Micky Barron, Stephen Pears, Keith Houchen and Graeme Lee.

Jimmy Gettings of La Mirage picture framing shop

Jimmy Gettings of La Mirage picture framing shop

Hartlepool picture framer Jimmy Gettings, owner of La Mirage shop in Alma Street, appeared in the Mail in August in an effort to find Darren to give him a host of memorabilia which Darren had left at his shop to be framed back in 2001.

Jimmy, a lifelong Pools supporter, was clearing out some old stock cupboards this summer when he stumbled upon a pile of Hartlepool Mail cuttings and strips from the defender’s time at Pools.

Darren has now been reunited with the mementoes after he was tracked down in his native Sheffield.

Pools fan Mike Squires posted Jimmy’s appeal on Facebook via the Sheffield’s United Fans Group page and was quickly contacted by Darren’s brother-in-law and a meeting between the two was arranged.

Darren said: “I am very grateful to Jimmy for taking the trouble to get these lovely memories over to me, and also to Mike for getting to Sheffield and making me very happy.

“They were great times at Hartlepool and I still look out for them and send my best to the club and those great fans.

“I remember Jimmy very well as he was a Poolie through and through and a proper Hartlepool character - a real diamond of a bloke.

“It was always good to visit his shop in town and to have a chat about the team. I am thrilled to have them and I will make sure they have a great home here in South Yorkshire.”

Darren played in 170 games for Pools and was well known for his 100% commitment.

He was signed by the then Pools boss Mick Tait from Scarborough, and after four seasons he signed for non-league side Northwich Victoria.

Jimmy said: “It was really very kind of Mike Squires to get the memorabilia to Darren and I want to sincerely thank him for sorting everything out between here and Sheffield.

“I just wanted Darren to be reunited with his strips and Hartlepool Mail cuttings as I know he loved his four years here in town and the fans loved his never say die attitude. He is the sort of player that Craig Harrison would love in the squad now as his attitude was brilliant.

“It was a pleasure to get them delivered to him and I know many Pools fans will love seeing his picture in the Hartlepool Mail as his face will bring back many special memories.”