Heartbreak at death of legendary Bristol Rovers fan

Pete Dibble was a huge Bristol Rovers fan. Credit: BPM Media

A legendary Bristol Rovers fan has died following a battle with cancer.

Pete Dibble, who was nicknamed 'Pies', passed away in April at the age of 73.

He was known among fellow Gas fans for his mischievous sense of humour and fierce loyalty to the club, whose home matches he always attended.

He grew up in Bristol and raised a family in St George, passing on his passion for football to his three children and six grandchildren.

Pete was married to Joy for 52 years after they met at a Colston Hall gig. Credit: BPM Media

Son Tony said: “He was a nice bloke, very loud, always up for a laugh, and just sound with everyone.

"All his grandkids are absolutely heartbroken. They loved spending time with him. He was a hero to them.”

Tony said he has been "inundated" with messages of support from people across Bristol who loved seeing his father at Rovers matches.

Fellow supporter Steve Gallacher said: "I knew him for about 18 years from local pubs and following Rovers. I thought he was only in his 60s, he was very full of life.

Pete had three children and six grandchildren. Credit: BPM Media

"He was a family man, football mad and a jolly person. He'd organise buses to go up to the home games. I got to know him through my old man, and we all looked up to him".

Pete worked in The Mechanics Arms pub in St George, and was well-liked by regulars.

'A bit of a character'

"The nickname Pies was just basically because he was a bit overweight,” laughed Tony.

"People in the Mechanics Arms [on Clouds Hill Road] used to call him that. People would call him Coot as well because he had a bit of a bald head. He could definitely take a joke.

"People loved him for that. They’d say, ‘Oh, shut up Pies.’ He was a bit of a character.”

Bristol Rovers manager Joey Barton met with fans outside the Memorial Stadium. Credit: BPM Media

Steve phoned the club after Pete’s death, hoping his decades of loyalty would be recognised with a letter – but Rovers made a bigger gesture.

Manager Joey Barton signed a Rovers shirt in his memory and handed it over outside the Memorial Stadium to a group of fans who had been close to Pete.

Tony added: "It’s fantastic for the club to do this for my dad.”

Pete is survived by his wife Joy, with whom he shared 52 years of marriage, and his children Tony, 43, Elise, 47, and Chris, 45.

Read more: