FOOTBALL legend Ray Parlour was a hit with Dorchester fans at the opening of a new builders’ merchant.

The launch of the Gibbs and Dandy store in the county town went down a storm with punters with the appearance of the star guest.

Delighted customers spent the afternoon chatting with the sportsman during a lively question and answer session, as well as having photos and getting autographs from the former Arsenal and England player.

Mr Parlour said he enjoyed meeting local fans and chatting about football.

He said: “There was a really good vibe in the store yesterday, and I enjoyed talking with the lads from Dorchester.

“We all had a real laugh talking about football, life and everything in between.”

Branch manager Richard Buck said the event went down extremely well.

He said: “We had a great turn-out for the opening, with lots of builders keen to chat to the Talk Sport pundit.

“It was great to see faces old and new coming down to the store, and Ray got on with them all like a house on fire.”

Mr Parlour is one of Gibbs and Dandy’s Team Builder ambassadors, an initiative which aims to support the sports teams of local tradesmen.

The store, which opened on the site of the former Build Center on Great Western Road, is one of over 30 new Gibbs and Dandy branches serving professionals in the trade.

Mr Buck said that with such a positive response he is very optimistic about the future success of the new branch.

He said: “We’re very excited about the future of the store.

“Although it’s early days we’ve had some great feedback from customers and this looks set to continue.

“The opening meant we got to meet some of the town’s local tradesmen, as well as launching Gibbs and Dandy with our old customers, and they were all able to see what the new store has to offer.

“Many said they’ll definitely be returning so we’re very optimistic for the success of the store”.

Representatives from Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance were also present at the event to raise money in memory of a member of staff who sadly passed away two weeks ago.