A glittering career which took a Great Broughton boy from the pitches of West Cumbria with Broughton Red Rose to lifting the Lancashire Cup for St Helens in front of nearly 30,000 spectators at Wigan’s famous Central Park has earned him a place in Saints’ Hall of Fame.

The name of Peter Gorley was written into the club’s history books on Sunday as he joined a long list of star-studded names and giants of the game, from legendary Australian powerhouse Mal Meninga to Super League-era star Keiron Cunningham.

The second-rower enjoyed an enviable career for club and country and played in two Lancashire Cup finals for Workington Town and three for Saints, lifting the cup once with each club.

But the former Red Rose amateur, who played for his country alongside his older brother and Widnes great Les, does not put himself on the same pedestal as many of the outrageous talents he played with and against.

Truthfully, he still cannot believe it all happened to him.

“It’s the icing on the cake for me,” he said.

“To be involved with a team like that and to be recognised like this is unbelievable.

“I never thought about it being a career and I never had any great aspirations to get into rugby league.

“I didn’t really want to sign as a professional; I wanted to stay as an amateur.

“I never thought I’d be good enough to play professionally for my country.

“To be a part of This Is Your Life, to have somebody write a book about you, to play for your country; I didn’t expect any of it.”

Gorley signed for Saints from Town in 1979, making his debut against Rochdale Hornets in the Floodlit Trophy and marking it with a memorable try.

He said: “I was looking around the dressing room thinking ‘I know every player in here’.

“When you’re playing with a good side and good players, if you’ve got any ability at all they will bring it out of you.

“I couldn’t have wished for a better club to be a part of.

“Usually in teams you had cliques but at Saints everybody was together.”

He shone in a Saints side in transition and went on to play more than 200 times for the Merseyside club, scoring 46 tries and earning five caps for Cumbria.

When Mal Meninga featured on the Australian version of This Is Your Life, the show’s producers chose Gorley to fly out and play a part in the production.

Meninga only played one season in England but made a huge impression on his West Cumbrian team-mate, who still remembers his larger-than-life arrival at Saints, sending players skidding over the whitewash on their backs like bowling pins while he charged over for another try.

“He was at the top of the ladder and I was just on the bottom rung,” he said. “The best player I have ever seen or had the privilege to play with.”

On the wall of his Great Broughton home is a Test shirt gifted to him by Meninga, nestled between Gorley’s own from his time starring for Saints and Great Britain.

Gorley also recalls his Town days playing with Paul Charlton, once the last line of defence with what looked like no hope of preventing a try, only to bounce his opponent into touch and save the day.

He speaks often with Arnold ‘Boxer’ Walker, who jokes that he still pays the price for doing Gorley’s tackling.

And he looks back fondly on the early stages of his career with Red Rose, whom he only joined because they needed players for a new team.

“We won just about everything there was to win in the amateur game,” he said.

Peter and his brother Les were cornerstones of the Town pack in the 1970s and played alongside each other in the Lancashire Cup triumph in 1977.

Both went on to achieve great things, with Peter signing for St Helens and going on to captain the club as they enjoyed success in the Premiership and Lancashire Cup. Les joined Widnes and the siblings would face off more than once.

“There was no quarter asked or given when I played Les,” Peter said. “He didn’t care that I was his brother.”

Gorley finished his career with a short spell at Whitehaven which only proved to him that he was ready to hang up his boots.

And although he never felt as good as the famous names he now keeps company in the Hall of Fame, Gorley still looks back on his career with a smile and a sense that he made the most of his talent every time he played.