Barrow AFC was encouraging people to sponsor parts of its pitch in 1989.

In a massive push to raise the £100,000 needed to bring the Holker Street ground up to Vauxhall Conference standards, the club launched the sponsorship bid at the ground with the help of Miss Great Britain, Barrow’s Amanda Dyson.

And the first fan to buy his own piece of the ground was 16-year-old John Hudson, of Red Oak Avenue, Barrow.

John bought his bit of Holker Street out of his first week’s wages.

“He’s been a keen supporter during the past season,” said his father.

“He was tickled pink to find he’d got the first piece to be sold.”

John’s ten square feet of the six-yard box cost him £15.

The prices for sponsoring parts of the pitch were £1 a square foot for the centre sections, or £7.50 for ten, £1.50 a square foot for the penalty areas or £11.50 for ten and £2 a square foot for the six-yard box or £15 for ten.

In addition, local businesses were invited to sponsor the goal nets, goal posts, cross bars, manager’s bench, corner flags and penalty spots.

Sponsors who successfully bid for the dug out and corner flags would be able to have their names on those items.

The scheme was thought up be Barrow employment training non-executive chair Duncan Thomas and had been named Lease a Piece.

"We have 71,280 square feet of pitch," said the soccer club's fund-raising co-ordinator Leasil Burrow.

"If we managed to sell them all it would take us a long way towards raising all the money we need."

Each sponsor who bought a piece of the ground would receive a certificate of sponsorship and their number would go into a free draw every week.

The prize would be two free tickets to watch a home game from the director's box or a chance for two to travel to an away game as guests of the club.