Saturday sees the return of Aylesbury Big Day to stadiummk and it’s fair to say it will be be an extra-special day for Rob Hall.
While growing up in Aylesbury, Hall attended The Grange School and earlier in the week REDDOT spoke to headmaster Vince Murray, who gave a few insights into what the winger was like as a pupil.
“My first memory of Rob was when, as a Year 7 student, I asked to see him in relation to his academy activities at West Ham,” headmaster Murray said. “I had to enquire as to how he was getting on with both school and playing for West Ham as I am aware that good footballers can be pulled in many directions.
“Rob was always very clear that he wanted to be a footballer and I wanted him to know that as a school we would support his ambitions.”
Murray and The Grange clearly had Hall’s best interests at heart and that is certainly highlighted in one episode the headmaster had with the forward.
He recalled: “I had cause, once, to tell Rob off and that was when I found him to be playing football with his friends, at lunchtime, in his socks! Needless to say, I told him that he needed to be looking after his feet and get his shoes on.”
During Hall’s time at The Grange, he made his debut for England at youth level and had the tricky task of balancing his GCSEs while also representing his country.
“I can remember how proud we were of him, that one of our own was representing England and becoming a European Champion.
“Rob gifted the school one of his England shirts and this hangs outside my office and I often hear students and visitors stop to make comment about Rob and his achievements.”
As part of the Big Day, and to show his appreciation for his old school, Hall went back and visited The Grange this week to hand over 40 tickets for Saturday’s game at stadiummk.
Murray added: "It was good to see him recently and I always get a lift when I see that he has scored, no more so when he recently scored against Leeds.
“We are looking forward to being able to give our students and family tickets for the Aylesbury Big Day and we wish MK Dons all the very best for the season.”
Anyone with a HP18-HP23 postcode can purchase tickets for Saturday's clash with Reading at a discount rate - prices for Aylesbury residents have been reduced to £15 adults and £3 under-18s in standard areas of the ground, while organised groups of 20 or more can enjoy a special rate of £12 adults and £1 under-18s.
To purchase tickets, or for more information on the Aylesbury Big Day, visit the Box Office at stadiummk/kiosk at centre:mk or call 0333 200 5343.