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Last Updated: Monday, 21 May 2007, 05:42 GMT 06:42 UK
Golden tribute to football hero
Precious - the egg commemorating Best
Precious - the egg commemorating George Best - Pic: Nikki Hill
A precious egg to celebrate the life of legendary footballer George Best is to go on display at Belfast City Airport which has been re-named in his honour.

The egg was designed by Sarah Faberge, whose great grandfather Carl was famed for the precious jewellery he fashioned for the Russian tsars.

On what would have been George Best's 61st birthday on Tuesday, the display in his name will be launched.

The egg follows a similar sporting tribute to Jimmy Johnstone of Celtic.

Jeff Healey, a film maker, was instrumental in bringing that tribute about and, when the idea for a similar project for Best was mooted, he was happy to help.

"We were making a film about Jimmy five years ago. He was suffering from Motor Neurone Disease.

"Sarah Faberge was so inspired by his fight and his spirit that she wanted to make an egg in his honour.

"It was a huge success and helped make the last years of his life more comfortable."

Jeff said the egg also made people more aware of MND.

When he was approached by Geprge Best Carryduff Manchester United Supporters' Club about a second egg, this time in honour of Best, he was unsure.

Golden boy - the George Best figure inside the egg
Golden boy - the George Best figure inside the egg - Pic: Nikki Hill

"I talked to Jimmy and he said: 'Don't be so daft. It's George Best, he's a pal of mine, do it!'

"My boyhood heroes ganged together and dropped me in it," he joked.

The eggs are worth about 10,000. One of the George Best Faberge eggs has already made 28,000 at auction.

The money raised goes to the George Best Foundation which raises money for local football and research into liver disease and alcoholism.

"If you can raise some money and charity will benefit, then why not," said Jeff.

John Dempsey from the supporters' club said a total of 68 eggs had been made.

"The first one was given to us for free and it made 28,000, so that was a great stepping stone for us," he said.

The eggs are for sale to interested parties with all profits going to the foundation.

In past times, Faberge created eggs to honour Admiral Nelson and Thomas Jefferson.

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