The Story of Bradford Boys by John Bulled 1994
In view of the crucial importance of the position of General Secretary in an Association like ours, it would seem appropriate to start with the two longest serving Secretaries, Walter French (1908 - 1928) and George Tavender (1954 -1969), both of whom were subsequently to have one of the Association’s Trophies named after him.
He was elected to the Committee of BSAA at the 1903 AGM and on the next two or three years is to be found on the sub-committee “ ... to deal with all matters relating to the Bolton match, future trials, etc” (November 29th 1905), on another (January 26th 1906) “ ... to organise a Whist Drive in view of the low state of the Association’s finances” and, finally (March 31st 1908) on the one that made the arrangements for the Schools' Cup Final in that year. He is also recorded (on April 11th 1906) as speaking on the behalf of Fairweather Green players and spectators, who had been accused of misconduct in a match against Barkerend; among other decisions the Committee ruled “ ... that Mr French talk seriously to the boys concerned.” A little later on, Walter French reported to the Committee that one of his boys (a member of the City team) was “very ill”, the Committe reacting by authorising him to spend a sum “ on such support as he deems necessary.”
At the 1908 AGM he was elected Secretary in place of Mr H Brooks by 8 votes to 3, the only occasion on which a serving Secretary has been replaced by a vote. Obviously, once he became Secretary, Walter French‘s activities became merged with those of the Association as a whole; he thus shared the pleasures of the Trophy winning season of 1915/1916 as well as the frustrations of other, less successful seasons. We see him forming part of a delegating to approach the Education Secretary, asking him to use his influence to persuade the Parks Committee to allow the use of Bradford Moor Park for schools’ football as well as the more level parts of Peel and Manningham Parks, (August 28th 1908), also as a member of a delegation to the two professional clubs in 1912 trying to secure dates on their grounds. Another of his duties, from time to time, was to accompany boys who had been selected for internationals or international trials; on 6th March 1914, he was deputed to accompany Tarran and Hill of Whetley Lane to Newark for the International Trial; on April 19th 1916 he together with Mr Bolton, were selected to accompany Wellock to Glasgow for the International v Scotland, while on March 7th 1919, the same two gentlemen were assigned to escort Bowers to Swansea, where he was playing as goal-keeper against Wales. His last escort duty was to accompany Albert Geldard (in the company of Mr E Hall) to the international v Wales at Bristol. He appears to have taken the initiative in inviting the Councils of the English and Scottish Schools’ FA’s to play their game on March 5th 1917 at Valley Parade.Walter French served on the Council of the Yorkshire County Schools’ Sports Association and was an unsuccessful candidate for a place on the ESFA Council in 1913. In 1927 the constitution of the BSAA was amended and the Football ‘Section’ became an autonomous Association of which Walter French was Secretary. However, at the 1928 AGM he resigned his position, having served as Secretary for twenty years.
Three years later when he retired from teaching, a General Meeting resolved “... that tangible recognition be given to Mr French on his retirement and that £2-2-0d be given from Association funds to form a nucleus.” To ensure the success of the testimonial fund a sub-committee, consisting of the Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer, plus Messrs Moverley and Brooks, was set up. This sub-committee decided to involve the Executive Committee of BSAA in the project; at its meeting on September 4th 1931 this body voted to recommend to the AGM that BSAA should organise the testimonial fund. Subsequently all schools were circularised and a maximum subscription of 1/- was fixed. At the meeting on December 11th it was agreed that Mr French should be asked what form he would like the testimonial to take; the presentation would be made at a Social Evening. Mr French selected a clock, which was presented to him at a Dinner at the Talbot Hotel on February 13th at which the Director of Education was present. At the same time Walter French was elected a Life Member of BSAA. We have already described in Chapter 5 the presentation to the Association in 1961 of the Walter French Trophy”.
The second of our two long serving secretaries was GEORGE TAVENDER who was elected to the committee at the 1948 AGM. At that time he was a teacher at Lorne Street, but he subsequently taught at Barkerend, Highfield and Wibsey (from 1957 to his retirement). The presence, as head Master of Wibsey, of, Bill Railton, George’s predecessor as Secretary, meant that no obstacles were placed in his way in fulfilling his obligations to Bradford and Yorkshire as well as carrying out his many refereeing commitments.
The opening week of the 1948/1949 season found him refereeing the City Trial game at Woodhall and a ‘friendly ‘ with Barnsley at Manningham Mills, while in the closing week of the season he refereed one junior semi-final and the “Aurora Trophy” and Schools' Shield finals. In the 1949/1950 season the Yorkshire Schools’ FA appointed George to referee the Yorkshire v Lancashire game at Valley Parade and, at the end of the season, he was appointed to referee the Schools' Cup Final between St. Bede's and Grange at Park Avenue. He was at Park Avenue again for the Final (Belle Vue v Priestman) in 1951, the year in which he was appointed as Linesman for the England v Eire game at Anfield.
He had already been appointed as the Association’s representative to BSAA in 1949 and in 1951 he became Joint Team Manager with J. S. Rhodes, a post he occupied for three seasons. At the end of the 1952/1953 season YSFA appointed George to referee the Wylie Shield Final and, to mark the occasion, he had been presented with a silver whistle. His Bradford colleagues authorised him to have it suitably engraved at the cost of the Association. This was not George’s only honour in 1953, however, for on May 30th he refereed the Scotland v Wales Schools’ International at Motherwell. In 1954 sterner things summoned him, for in March, Bill Railton resigned the Secretaryship for ‘personal reasons’ and George was appointed as Temporary Secretary until the AGM when the appointment was made permanent. He had already been elected to the Council of YSFA and had attended the AGM’s of both that Association and ESFA.
The period of George’s Secretaryship was in many ways the most successful and exciting and, at the same time, one of the most exasperating in the Association’s history, with good ‘runs’ in the ‘English - 5th Round in 1955/1956 and again in 1959/1960, the Quarter-Final in 1960/1961 and 1962/1963 and the 6th Round in 1968/1969, his last season - and in the ‘Wylie’, which was shared with Rotherham in 1963/1964 and with Doncaster in 1965/1966 - and epic struggles with Barnsley (4 matches in 1960/1961) and with Stoke. George’s ‘eternal optimism’ was much in demand on these occasions. And, of course, he was very much involved in the successful career of Barrie Wright, who he accompanied to 6 internationals in 1961 as well as to County matches from 1959 - 1961 and the three International trials in 1961.
However, there was no question of his neglecting his duties with Bradford. He rarely missed a meeting and he continued his local refereeing activities, being in charge of the first City Supporters' Intermediate Trophy Final, Carlton v Woodroyd, on March 26th 1956, as well as the corresponding game in the following season between Carlton and St. Bede's, and the Schools' Cup Final at Park Avenue on May 2nd 1957. He was also appointed to referee the ESFA Trophy final between Brighton and Liverpool in 1955/1956.
George was, however, to be disappointed in his hopes of gaining the opportunity to work on a larger stage. In 1957 he was short-listed for the post of General Secretary of the ESFA but was not appointed; nor in the following year did he find it possible to break the South Yorkshire monopoly of the YSFA Secretaryship. He was honoured with the Chairmanship of YSFA in 1957/1958 and served as Hon Treasurer from 1969 until his death.
He resigned the Bradford Secretaryship at the 1969 AGM when he was elected Vice Chairman and Life Member of the Association; he served as Chairman in 1970/1971. George’s interest in the Association’s activities did not cease even then; he continued to attend meetings and matches until 1973 and organised the Yorkshire v Lancashire game at Valley Parade in 1972.
His death was reported to the meeting of Council on November 1st 1973, when the Chairman, Peter Nelson, spoke of him in the following terms: “...An event which has come as a sad and terrible shock to us all." He paid tribute to his outstanding record in Schools’ Football, not only as an administrator both at City and County level but earlier as a referee of International calibre. He highlighted ‘perennial optimism’ as his most loved and best-remembered characteristic and said that in people’s minds he would always be thought of as the kindliest and most helpful of men, especially in adversity. The Chairman concluded by saying that the best memorial we could provide would be to maintain the high standards set by George Tavender for schools’ soccer in Bradford. This was in addition, of course, to some sort of material Memorial that the Association would like to provide, with Mrs Tavender’s consent, at some appropriate time in the future.”
Subsequently a Trophy was purchased with donations from schools, organisations and individuals, designated the “George Tavender Memorial Trophy” and earmarked for the Association’s Under 11 competitions.
The Association has numbered three long serving Treasurers among the officers, K Wright(1910-1926), John Hodgson (1943-1959) and Norman Emmett (1964-1979).
K. WRIGHT was present at the first minuted BSAA meeting on September 4th 1901; he was at that time Secretary, a position he continued to hold until 1904. He remained on the committee and in 1907 was elected Vice President, being President in the year 1908/1909. In 1910 he was elected Treasurer. He seems to have done a certain amount of refereeing in his younger days and was a member of a number of delegations e.g. to the professional clubs. He retired from teaching at Ryan Street, and the Treasureship in 1926 but was an invited guest at the county game Yorkshire v Lancashire at Valley Parade on November 11th 1932.
J. HODGSON (Thorpe) first joined the Committee as Treasurer during the war (1943) becoming Treasurer of BSAA at the same time. He had already been President of BSAA from 1938-1940. He represented the Association at ESFA and YSFA AGM’s on a number of occasions. He died in ‘harness "in February 1959 and his Obituary in the 1962 BSAA handbook spoke of him thus “... John Hodgson, not surprisingly, died as it were, in harness. The work he had accomplished in the service of the BSAA was truly colossal. As Honorary Treasurer of both the BSSA and BSFA for many years he performed prodigies in nurturing the finances of these Association..." and, as if these tasks were not enough for his unbounded energy, he worked so long and so assiduously for the Cricket Association that he was made a Life member of that body. In addition he found time to represent the Football Association at the meetings of the Bradford and District Football Association and to attend meetings at County level of various schools’ Associations. His knowledge of the Rules of the Associations with which he was connected was encyclopaedic and invariably accurate. Steeped in the history and love of the BSAA (he served over thirty years) he could always be relied upon to interpret regulations not only in the correct legal sense but also in keeping with the long tradition of the past. Imperturbable, quiet in manner but firm in his convictions, his views carried weight born of long experience and conscientious devotion to the Association’s interests.
NORMAN EMMETT 'S period of office coincided with the great expansion of the Association’s activities in the 1970’s and the consequent growth of its finances. He served for three years on the Committee from 1958 - 61 while a teacher at Buttershaw Junior School and subsequently at Woodside Junior School, but lost his place in 1961. However, when a vacancy occurred in September 1961, he was co-opted and gained re-election in 1962.
Following a brief period as Assistant Treasurer in 1964 (the only time so far that the Association has had one) he was elected Treasurer in 1964. In this post Norman truly found ‘his niche’. Treasurers tend to be classed as somewhat shadowy figures; Norman would never have been. In the first place he had a masterly grasp of financial matters and, as I have suggested already, he presided over a great increase in the Association’s financial commitments. By the time he retired, one main source of income was the grant from BSSF and he was one of a group of people who helped ensure that the organisations responsible for running school sport were given, by the LEA the financial support they needed.
He was also one of the people who, with Tony Cryer, sat in with me at the many meetings which were required to obtain for us the pitch at King George V Playing fields. My fondest personal memory of Norman is of seeing him ‘on duty’ at the hut at Bradford Rovers ready to receive, with great patience, gate money of little more than a £1 and breaking off to pursue the miscreants who were attempting entry by a gap in the fence.
After resigning as Treasurer in 1979, Norman served as Chairman in 1979/1980. He received the ESFA Long Service Award in 1979 and the Life membership of our Association in 1981. Norman died in June 1983.
The Association has had its share of worthy CHAIRMEN, a few of whom have served three terms viz. J. H. Charlesworth, G. H. Brook, F. Hickling, W. Moverley, T. Hogg, C. W. Moorhouse, W. Railton, and J. McKay.
J. H. CHARLESWORTH will best be remembered as the man who ‘trained’ the City Boys team that won the ESFA Trophy Competition in Season 1915/1916; in recognition of his ‘strenuous efforts’ he was presented with a framed photograph of the boys and Committee. He was one of those present at that first minuted Meeting at the Osborne on 4th September 1901; at that time he taught at Whetley Lane School, whose teams were amongst the strongest in the City. At the meeting of 16th December 1901 he and Mr. R. Saxon of Belle Vue were appointed to train the City team. “Jack “ Charlesworth was President of BSAA for the first time in 1903/1904.
In the following season he refereed a game on Barkerend’s ground at Harewood Street between that school and Drummond in which there was “... stone throwing and abusive language by spectators." The Committee on his proposition, recommended Barkerend to find another ground or, alternatively, to ask for Police presence at Harewood Street. On 19th October he was nominated to form a Selection Committee with Messrs. Brook and Wright at the City trial game and a little later he was part of a deputation to the Parks Committee to try to get a better playing areas. On 29th November 1905 the Committee decided to appoint a Selection Committee again “ ... to deal with all matters relating to the Bolton match, future trials and experiments.” Messrs. Bolton, Brook, Charlesworth, French and Long were to form this Committee. Jack Charlesworth was one of the three people (a majority of one) who, on 3rd October 1906 voted against participating in the ESFA Competition. On 31st March 1908 he, Mr. French and Mr. Brook were delegated to “...work the Final.”
Jack Charlesworth’s second Presidency came in 1911/1912 and his managing of the winning Trophy side in 1915/1916. In 1914 he and Mr. French, the Secretary, accompanied two Whetley Lane boys, Tarran and Hill, to Newark for the International Trial. However, a disagreement on procedural matters (the right of a Special General Meeting to ‘tamper with rules’) led him to resign from the Committee on 28th October 1916. His colleagues tried to dissuade him, for “... besides being a good sport, he had for so many years been a member of Committee and a strenuous worker on behalf of BSAA” but Jack was adamant - at least until the 1917 AGM.
He was President for the third time in 1925/1926 and at the 1927 AGM he was placed on the sub - committee that had the task of revising the BSAA constitution. Following this revision he was elected to the new Football Committee. At the 1930 AGM Wilf Moverley, the Chairman expressed the thanks of the ‘Section ‘ to Messrs Brook, Charlesworth, French and Hall who had withdrawn from active participation after many years of faithful service.’ J. H. Charlesworth resigned as Head Master of Usher Street Modern School at Easter 1937.
G. H. BROOK is first mentioned on a list of referees included in the Minutes of 4th September 1901, and is noted as refereeing the Parish Church v Ryan Street game on 21st September and other games in subsequent weeks. He was not on the Committee at this time, but he attended the monthly General Meeting in February 1902 and was elected to the Committee at the 1902 AGM. Like other Committee members he served on various sub committees and delegations. He helped to select the team to play Bolton (19th October 1904), and to organise a Whist Drive (26th January 1906). At the meeting on 6th December 1907 he protested against the obviously prevalent practice of discussing General Committee business at ‘selection ‘ meetings.
His first term, as President of BSAA, came in 1909/1910. After this we find him as part of a delegation to meet the Parks Committee in 1913(with Messrs. Gledhill and French). He was President again in 1915/1916 by which time he was a Second Lieutenant (subsequently a Captain) in the King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry and was not present at any meetings after 27th November 1915 though he was co-opted to the Committee at the 1917 AGM. Later in the year he and the other ‘ military members of the committee on active service’ were voted a gift of half a guinea. Captain Brook now an M.C. and having moved from Carlton Street to Ryan Street resumed his attendance at Meetings on 24th January 1919. There was another deputation to the Chairman of the Education Committee on the subject of grounds in January 1921 and Brook was one of its members.
In 1922/1923 George Brook was President for the third time, clearly a popular choice. In 1927 he was naturally one of those given the task of revising the Constitution and, equally naturally, he was elected to the first Football Committee. He served for a further three years and withdrew from active participation along with Messrs. Charlesworth, French and Hall at the 1930 AGM.
F. HICKLING’S name appears in the list of those present at the Meeting on 4th September 1901 which has already been mentioned. He was one of those listed as a referee and subsequently is noted as refereeing Usher street v Belle Vue on 14th September, Carlton Commercial v Lilycroft on 21st September and other games. Mr Hickling was Vice-President this year, though, in fact, he chaired all the meetings and was President for the first time in 1902/1903. He continued to referee, being noted as officiating at the Belle Vue v Christ Church cup-tie in 1903. Mr Hickling presided over the Special General Meeting on 6th February, which discussed ‘the introduction of the Rugby Code.’ Following his term as President in 1903/1904 he was absent from the Committee until 1910.
At the 1911 AGM he was elected Vice-President and held the Presidency for the second time in 1912/1913. On taking over he commented that ‘he had come to a good heritage’ with a balance in hand of £32; at the end of his year in office it was £47.After completing his term as ex President Mr Hickling was again elected to the Committee in 1914, but he failed to gain election in the following year.
However, at the 1917 AGM he was elected Vice President, which meant that in 1918/1919 he was President for the third time. The retiring President, B. G. Smith, commented that Mr Hickling’s ‘induction was a very appropriate one as our 21st Sports Meeting was close at hand.’ He once again returned to the Committee in 1920 but was not present at any meetings in that year and did not seek re-election in 1921.
With WILF MOVERLEY, we move to a new generation and to colleagues of people still living. Jim Wootton (a member of our Committee from 1949 -1 963, Fixture Secretary from 1952-1960 and Chairman in 1956/1957) was his deputy at Highfield and writes of him thus: “... I was Deputy to Wilf Moverley at Highfield from 1956 - 1958. Wilf was then regarded as the G.O.M. of Secondary Modern Heads. I first met him when I joined the BSFA and BSAA committee in 1947. Even then he was regarded as a fount of wisdom. He had served in the Great War in the Navy and been gassed. This left him with a weakness of the chest. In 1919 he started at Fairweather Green, then moved to Drummond. He did not become Head until February 1943. Highfield was his only headship. He retired in July 1959 when he was 63. Despite his poor health he lived until Easter 1985.
Wilf was interested in most sports: soccer as a keen supporter of Park Avenue; Cricket - he served on the Yorkshire, as well as the Bradford Committee; he was a Life Member of BSAA after 40 years service and was President of the Bradford NAHT. Besides sport, he loved music and had a fine brass band at the school. He was a great raconteur and we listened avidly to his anecdotes - a great sense of humour.” Wilf was elected to the Committee of BSAA at the 1926 AGM. When the Constitution was revised in the following year, he was elected both to the BSAA General Executive Committee and the Football Committee. At the meeting on 19th October 1928 he was appointed ‘to take charge of teams in trials and inter - city games.
In 1930 he was appointed as Chairman for the first time and in 1932 was not only President of BSAA but was elected to the Council of YSFA. He was appointed sole Team Manager on 2nd September 1932. At the meeting on 21st October 192 Wilf spoke “ at length on the need to stage a County game, particularly for the prestige of the Association and also the need to strengthen his seat on the Yorkshire Council.” The game he desired v. Lancashire was played at Valley Parade on 28th December 1932 and won by Yorkshire by 4 goals to 2. A week later Wilf was in Glasgow with the Bradford team, which lost 2 - 5, but which ”had a great time.”
Wilf was sole Team Manager again in 1933/1934, a season which saw the City team involved in a twice-replayed game v Mexborough in the English Trophy and making a semi-final appearance in the Wylie Competition. He was also on a sub-committee, which considered what turned out to be an abortive tour in France. At the end of the Season he accompanied Warnett (Barkerend) to the International Trial at Salford.
Successes both professional and sporting, came his way in 1934; at the Committee Meeting on 16th March 1934 he was congratulated on his appointment as Principal of Drummond Road Evening Institute and at the one on 29th September 1934 similar congratulations were accorded him on his election as Chairman of YSFA. As a consequence of this, Bradford offered to stage the Yorkshire v Lancashire game, which was played at Valley Parade on 2nd January 1935. Wilf returned to the Yorkshire Committee after his ‘term’ as ex President in 1936, but at the Bradford Meeting on 26th May 1937 he intimated that he was not seeking re-election. He, of course remained on the Bradford Committee, and at the 1945 AGM he was elected Vice - Chairman, giving him his second period as Chairman.
At the beginning of the 1947/1948 season, he together with Messrs. Hogg and Kreling worked on the two Professional clubs for the use of their grounds. At its Meeting on12th November 1947 the Committee decided to confer Life Membership on Wilf, together with Messrs A. Kendall, W. Hodgson and G. Salter.
Wilf’s active participation in the affairs of the Association was far from over, however, He was on the Selection Committee again in 1948/1949, and in 1951/1952 enjoyed his third ‘round’ as Chairman. He represented the Association at the ESFA AGM at Guildford that year. He continued as a member of the Selection Committee in the 1952/1953 and 1953/1954 seasons and attended Committee meetings regularly. In November 1953 he, with Tommy Hogg represented the Association at the ESFA Jubilee International at Maine Road, Manchester and the Jubilee Dinner. At the 1954 AGM he and W. Hodgson were elected as auditors and Wilf was yet again appointed to the Selection Committee. He continued as an Auditor until 1955 but ceased to be on the Selection Committee. He continued as an Auditor until 1959, by which time his attendance at meetings had become infrequent, although he attended and spoke at the 1959 and 1960 AGM’s. At the latter he made the presentation (a silver tankard) to Mr. F. Braithwaite, the long serving Secretary of Bradford Rovers FC and staunch friend of the Association.
Wilf once again attended the 1961 AGM and congratulated the Association on “... its most successful season in his 42 years experience”. After this he appears to have attended subsequent AGMs until that of 1969 when George Tavender announced his resignation; he spoke as a Life Member, of George’s work, and proposed his election as a Life Member of BSFA.
Personal. This must have been Wilf’s last appearance at a BSFA function; he was kept supplied with information of the Association’s activities, in which he remained keenly interested, and was invited to all special functions until his death in 1985.
TOMMY HOGG, though he trained as a teacher, came to Bradford as a professional footballer with the Park Avenue Club. He subsequently taught at Highfield and became Head Master of Tyersal Secondary School in 1952.
He came on to the Ffootball Committee by co-option in October 1931 and was soon in action as a linesman in the match v Dearne Valley in the Yorkshire Shield at Valley Parade on 23rd January 1932. Tommy was not elected to the Committee at the 1932 AGM but was co-opted again at the first Committee Meeting. During this season he was in the party that went to Glasgow for the Inter-city game and he also refereed the Div 1 Final at Valley Parade and the Junior Final on the Cleansing Dept’s Ground.
At the 1933 AGM he was elected to the Committee. In the next few years he is found officiating as referee or linesman in many domestic matches and in 1934 he was elected Fixture Secretary and on one occasion acted as Team Manager. Tommy was not a member of the Committee in the1935/1936 season, but was back in the fold in 1936 running the line in the Doncaster game at Valley Parade in November and refereeing end of season games. In 1938 he refereed the Stoke game at Valley Parade and in the following year he was appointed to referee the International Trial at Park Avenue on 25th February.
At the 1939 AGM he was elected Vice Chairman but his accession to the Chair was postponed until 1941, the 1940 AGM having decided that “... retiring officials be elected en bloc”. When he did become Chairman in 1941 his tenure was a short one as, at the meeting on 16th January 1942, a letter was read from him announcing his joining-up for military service.
Tommy resumed his BSFA activities in 1946 and was elected Vice Chairman and Ex Chairman at the AGM that year. Thus in 1947/1948 he was able to complete a full year as Chairman. One of his first tasks was to lead a delegation to the two professional clubs asking for the use of their grounds. The highlight of this season was the Yorkshire v London match played at Park Avenue on 1st January 1948.
After his three years as Vice Chairman, Chairman and ex-Chairman (1946-1949) Tommy was re-elected to the Committee at the1949 AGM but, in a very short time he was back to the ‘tread’ being Chairman for the second time in 1953/1954. In this period Tommy in company with Wilf Moverley attended the ESFA Jubilee match at Maine Road, Manchester followed by the Jubilee Dinner. He was also nominated together with the Treasurer and Acting-Secretary to attend the YSFA AGM and the ESFA AGM at Brighton, though subsequently ‘... having regard to the length of journey and expense involved’ he withdrew from the latter. He did, however, attend the 1955 AGM at the handier venue of York. 1955 was also the year of his Life-Membership.
He was not done however, with the Chairmanship to which he was elected for the fourth time in 1962/1963, a season in which Bradford reached the Quarter Final stage of the English Trophy and were from all accounts most unlucky to be dismissed at that stage. In the latter period he would have been gratified by the success of Barrie Wright, one of his Tyersal boys, and indeed by the success of his school team based on his prowess, which won the City Supporters' Intermediate Trophy and went on to ‘bag’ the treble, Schools' Cup, Schools' Shield and City Supporters' Senior Trophy. Tommy died on 26th October 1965. On 13th May 1968 the Secretary reported receiving a letter from Steve Duckham, Tommy’s successor at Tyersal, announcing the opening of the “Thomas Hogg Memorial Playing Field “ at the school and inviting the Association to send five representatives.
At the 1941 AGM Mr. Moorhouse was elected Vice-Chairman and, when Tommy Hogg was ‘called up’ up in the following January he became Acting Chairman. In 1942 and at the three succeeding AGMs he was elected Chairman. In season 1941/1942 there were no activities. In 1943/1944 a very limited League programme was played as well as the Schools' Cup. A similar programme was arranged for 1944/1945 but a fuller programme operated in 1945/1946. Mr. Moorhouse’s long tenure of office ended at the 1946 AGM. There after he attended few meetings and did not seek re-election to the committee in 1947.
BILL RAILTON having failed to gain election to the Committee at the 1938 AGM was co-opted at the meeting of 18th November following. At the 1939 AGM he gained election. He was elected to the Committee again at the 1946 AGM and was appointed Team Manager together with F. Taylor. Subsequently both were appointed to the five man Selection Committee. At the 1947 AGM Bill was elected Vice-Chairman and was appointed sole Team Manager, with a place on the Selection committee. He assumed the Chair in 1948 and gave up the Team managership. At the meeting of 19th January 1949, it was announced that the Secretary Mr. C. H. Kreling would be leaving Bradford in April, having obtained an appointment elsewhere. Bill took over the Secretaryship as from 8th April and was formally elected at the ensuing AGM. He was also elected to the YSFA Council.
Unfortunately, he had to resign the Secretaryship on medical advise in October 1950, his duties being taken over by Jim Wootton. However, Bill continues to attend Committee meetings and was re-elected to the Committee in 1951. He was elected to the Selection Committee and in 1952 resumed his position as Secretary with Jim Wooton as Fixture Secretary. Again, regrettably, this was short lived; in March 1954, it was reported that “owing to personal reasons Mr Railton had found it impossible to carry on as Secretary.” George Tavender became temporary Secretary until the AGM when he was elected Secretary; Bill was elected Vice Chairman and in 1956/1956 was Chairman for the second time. In the following, his ex- Presidential year, Bill was appointed as the Association’s representative to BSAA. Bill resumed his place on Committee in1957 and was re-elected in the two following years. Then at the 1960 AGM he was awarded Life Membership. At the 1964 AGM he was elected Vice Chairman and in 1965/1966 he served as Chairman for the third time. After his ex Presidential year (1966/1967) he was less regular in attendance, his final appearance being on 23rd June 1969. He died in March 1974 and the Association was represented at his funeral.
JOHN McKAY, the last of those who have occupied our “Chair” three times could well, given the present size of Council, be the last of all. He was first elected to the Committee at the 1949 AGM and almost immediately was used as a match official at trials, friendly games etc. His particular interest was in the under 11 age group; he was a linesman at one of the 1953 semi-finals. More often, though, in succeeding years John took on the duties of Chief Steward at important matches, and always he was a loyal supporter of the City side, his call “Come on Bradford!” being heard on grounds all over Yorkshire and beyond.
At the 1956 AGM he was elected Vice - Chairman, his first term as Chairman being 1957/1958. In that capacity he attended the English and Yorkshire AGM’s and served on the Emergency and Selection Committees. He also presided over the function in connection with the Yorkshire v Lancashire game at Valley Parade on 9th April 1958. John was Chairman again in 1966/1967 taking his place ex-officio on the Emergency and Selection Committees. He also performed his usual role as Chief Steward at the City Supporters' Finals in October. John’s last term as Chairman came in Season 1975/1976; before this he had been honoured with both the Life Membership of the Association (in 1971) and the ESFA Long Service Award (in 1974). His interests were not confined to football; he was Treasurer of the Field and Track Association from 1954 -1971 and was also made a Life Member of that organisation. Finally he was elected President of BSAA in 1962/1963 and was also elected to Life Membership of the Association.
Of the personalities mentioned so far, I have had the pleasure of working with George Tavender, Norman Emmett and John McKay. It would be remiss of me if I were not to mention some of the others with whom I have been associated since 1968; there was GEORGE PERROTT my predecessor as General Secretary, a charming and kindly man, whose services were lost to all of us too soon through illness; BILL CAMPBELL Chairman in1969/1970 and 1977/1978, whose misfortune it was to see his team knocked out of the English Trophy in the very first game on the first occasion and in the second in 1977/1978. Bill is also one of our Life Members and a holder of the ESFA Long Service Award, but he will be best remembered by his colleagues for his countless appearances as a referee, and in more recent years as the purveyor at the King George V Playing Field of what has been officially described as “ the best cup of tea north of the Trent.” "Salt of the Earth” Bill has been. The same could be said of SYD CLARKSON (Chairman 1971/1972); apart from organising an extensive programme of matches for his school team (Greengates), Syd worked manfully for junior football at City level, undertook the thankless task of securing advertisers (and their money) for the Handbook, and was always, it seemed, appearing on the line at our matches. Indeed, report has it that when he departed on his motor-bike (scooter) for tours of the Continent, his refereeing kit plus whistle were an essential part of his luggage.
Another, that seems to have been permanently refereeing was TONY WORRALL, though he served the Association well as Assistant/Local Secretary from 1980-1987
. Two others who undertook the awesome task of being Local Secretary were IAN FOX (1972-1976), who went on to be Treasurer following Norman Emmett’s retirement, and CED GELLING, who did the job from 1978-1980.
Other Chairmen with whom I worked include MICK WALSH, who apart from his work as Team manager and a match official, was generally reckoned to be more than usually capable when it came to running a meeting; KEN WILCOCK, another loyal servant of the Association, who was prepared to tackle any job that came along; JOHN ATKINSON, whose sense of humour enlivened many an otherwise dull occasion, and MALCOLM COLLINS, who has done so well in the refereeing sphere, but whose year as Chairman was ruined to a great extent by the cancellation of the domestic programme due to the industrial action within the teaching profession in 1985/1986.
Finally one must mention the last Secretary, ANDY METTAS, who took over the post of General Secretary in 1983 following Tony Cryer’s election to the ESFA Council.
There remains, to complete our list of ‘personalities’, two who have moved on after serving the Bradford Association well, to work for schools ‘ football at national level. They are Steve Allatt and Tony Cryer.
He resigned from the committee in 1962 consequent on his appointment as Lecturer at Saltley College of Education. Subsequently he was Headmaster of George Dixon School in Birmingham until his appointment to ESFA in 1985.
In the following season this team, which included Paul Gartland, David Jackson, and Roland Gregoire, reached the 6th Round of the “English” Trophy, losing to Liverpool in a replay, and in the semi final of the “Yorkshire” where they lost to Sheffield by a single goal at Bramall Lane. Two years later, in Season 1975 - 76, Tony managed his third side, which achieved only moderate success. In the following year he assumed his first administrative post that of “Local” Secretary, and in 1977/1978 he additionally took over his fourth City side. In the 1978/1979 season this side reached the semi final of the "English”, the furthest we have gone since winning the Trophy in 1915/1916. In 1979, as part of the preparation for my own resignation as General Secretary in the following year, Tony was elected Assistant Secretary and, as the year went on, steadily took over the duties of Secretaryship, assuming the post officially at the 1980 AGM. Unfortunately, as it seemed from Bradford’s point of view, the position of Divisional representative of Division C, ESFA, became unexpectedly vacant in 1983 and Tony’s known ability and the tremendous interest he had shown in all aspects of schools’ (and other) football in Yorkshire made him an obvious choice for the job.
He has by no means severed his links with Bradford - He was at the heart of the arrangements for the England v Switzerland International in 1987 - but his Bradford colleagues will be interested and, indeed proud to witness his success on a wider stage.
Nine Bradford Boys have attained schoolboy International honours at Under 15 level, viz: M. Wellock (Drummond Road) 1916 G. Hollis (Great Horton) 1917, C. Haigh (Lapage Street) 1917 Captain, F. Bower (Drummond Road) 1919, C. Gardner (Princeville) 1924, R. A. Geldard (Whetley Lane) 1927 - 1928, L. F. Shackleton (Carlton) 1936, B. Wright (Tyersal) 1960 Captain), D. Nicholls (Tong) 1972, and, in addition, one boy Nigel Ford (Belle Vue) was awarded a cap at Under 18 level in 1979.
MAURICE WELLOCK first played for Bradford Boys on 21st November 1914, against Dewsbury (away) in the first round of the English Trophy competition. The game was won 3-0 and Wellock scored once. He played right wing in this game and in the 2nd Round v Sheffield at Greenfield, which was lost 3-7. Wellock and two other members of this team, Arnold (Barkerend) and Silson (Fairweather Green) were available again in the following year. Dewsbury were again the opposition in the f1stRound in 1915/1916 but they ‘scratched’ so the first Trophy game of he season was the 2nd Round match v Leeds at Greenfield on 4th December. Wellock was now at centre forward and scored his first hat trick of the season in his side’s 4-1 win. He had not long to wait for his second, for, on 22nd January 1916, Grimsby were the visitors at Valley Parade and were soundly thrashed by 6 goals to nil. As we have seen, the ‘Yorkshire Sports’ used the word “brilliant” to describe Wellock’s play. North East Derbyshire, the visitors to VP in the 4th Round on 19th February, got off comparatively lightly losing 3-0, Wellock being content with 2 goals. The Quarter Final required Bradford to travel for the only time that season, to play Liverpool at Anfield. A hard game and a narrow 3-2 win resulted, Wellock scoring twice. The Semi Final and Final were played at Valley Parade; Sunderland were beaten 4-1, Wellock scoring another hat trick, and west Ham3-0, Wellock getting one. In all, his tally in the six Trophy games was 14 of his side’s 23 goals. Wellock was nominated for an international trial in 1914/1915 season but was not selected. Obviously what the ‘Yorkshire Sports’ referred to as “his wonderful deeds” made him an almost certain choice for the following year. The international programme that season consisted of two matches v Wales at Bolton on 15th April, which England won 2-1, and v Scotland at Glasgow on 24th April which Scotland won 4-4. This was the only game in the season in which Wellock failed to score. Incidentally, his school Drummond Road won the Schools' Shield for the first time this season. Maurice Wellock was obviously an “old fashioned” centre forwarding the sense that he “spear headed “ the attack and scored most of the goals. As his team mate Herbert Bartle (Wyke) said to bill Marshall (Schools’ Soccer Correspondent of the Telegraph and Argus):” You just kept supplying Maurice with through balls. His size and strength enabled him to bounce off players and his speed over a few yards was devastating.” Obviously, this was basically fair comment but one has to bear in mind that at least once the “Yorkshire Sports” criticised him 2for not continuing on his own.”
G HOLLIS AND C HAIGH were both members of the 1916/1917 Bradford side which beat Leeds and York and lost to Sunderland in that year’s Trophy Competition, Hollis playing at left back and Haigh at centre half. There was only one international game that season v Scotland and it was played at Valley Parade on 5th May, the invitation to play the game in Bradford only having been made on 4th April. Haigh incidentally captained the side which won by a goal to nil.
F BOWER also had just one game v Wales at Swansea. Bower was the goalkeeper in the 1918/1919 side, which beat York in a replay and Leeds before losing to Sunderland in the 3rd Round of the Trophy. There were three international matches this season to with Wales and one with Scotland. It was the first game v Wales, which was lost 1-3, for which Bower was selected.
CYRIL GARDENER played six times for Bradford in the 1923/1924 season, being the first of our internationals to play in the “Wylie” Shield as well as the “ English” Trophy. He was the right back and captain of the side which inflicted Bradford’s first ever defeat on Sheffield, 3-2 at Park Avenue in the 2nd Round of the “English”, and went on to beat Doncaster 6-1 at Manningham Mills following a 2-2 draw at Doncaster, before succumbing 1-0 at Dearne valley in the 4th Round. In the “Wylie” Bradford thrashed Normanton 10-0 at Manningham Mills, but Sheffield took ample revenge for their earlier defeat by winning 4-0 in the next round. Gardener’s school, Princeville, won the Division 2Championship in two successive years when he was playing, 1922-1924. By this time the selection process for the international side had become slightly more complicated and gardener had to play in a North trail at York before gaining selection. He played in two internationals v Scotland at Burnley and v Wales at Cardiff, both of which were lost.
R.A. (ALBERT) GELDARD (Whetley Lane) played seven times in the English and Wylie Trophies for Bradford in the 1925/1926 season, when he was 12 years old; he also played in the Yorkshire county side. At this time his normal position was on the right wing. In 1926/1927 his opportunities were more limited as far as Bradford was concerned as there were only Trophy games, two in the English, v NE Derbyshire (away) which was won 6-0, and v Mexborough (away), which was lost 0-4, and one in the Wylie v Hemsworth in which he did not play. Naturally, he continued to play for his county, and was selected to play for the international trial at Bournemouth, following which he gained selection for two international matches, the first against Wales, at Bristol which England won 6-2, the second v Scotland at Hampden Park which Scotland won 3-1. Albert continued his career for Bradford, for Yorkshire and for England in the 1927/1028 season. There were only four games for Bradford, three in the English and just one in the Wylie. He was now playing at inside right, from which position he scored a hat trick in the 1st Round of the English Trophy against Scarborough at Whetley Mills. In this, his finals season, he played in the England v The Rest trial at Reading and was able to make one more appearance for England against Scotland at Leicester, a game which England won 3-0. At this point his schoolboy career ended, he left school to take up a position at Buckle Crossley’s Dyeworks.
LEONARD F.SHACKLETON (Carlton) played only four times for Bradford in Trophy games, three times in season 1935/1935, on each occasion against Rother Valley in a three match marathon and once in 1935/1936 against Sheffield. As a pupil at a Secondary school he was under the existing rules, ineligible to play in the Wylie Shield or for the county side. Shackleton was first noticed at the trials early in the 1934/1935 season; he was listed by “Sportsmaster” in the Yorkshire Sports as one of those who impressed in the first trial. After the second trial “Sportsmaster” was more expansive: “Shackleton had wonderful ball control with an aptitude for suddenly darting through and shooting. As this boy is only 12 he should be destined for high honours, as he is one of the most promising boys seen in recent years.” He was, to a great extent a new ‘star ‘as he had not played football at his Primary School, Horton Bank Top. As we have seen, his chances at City level were limited that season but he shone for Carlton. On 2nd March 1935 “Sportsmaster” wrote of a game v St Bede's, in which “they were greatly indebted to Shackleton, who played brilliantly and scored six goals. This boy is only 12 years old and is undoubtedly one of the season’s discoveries.” Fortunately Bradford did play a ‘friendly’ with Stoke that season and for that game Shackleton was available. There were even fewer opportunities in the 1935/1936 season as Bradford were beaten by Sheffield in the 1st round of the English. The margin was 1-0 and “Sportsmaster” wrote, “Mr Slavin (Chairman ESFA) must have been impressed by the display of Shackleton and it is hoped he will remember his play when the international trial teams are selected.” Before that, however, there was the prestige match v Stoke at Valley Parade on New Year’s Day, which resulted in a 0-0 draw.
Shortly afterwards (31st January 1936) Leonard Shackleton was Bradford’s first choice for the international trials. He had to clear three hurdles; 1. the North v Midlands trial, held at Holgate School York on 29th February. Len was inside right on the North side, which won 3-0; he scored a goal and made the next stage: 2. the North v South trial, played at Fellows Park, Walsall on 14th March. North won by a goal to nil, Shackleton scored it and the “Daily Dispatch” commented, “an outstanding forward… his lack of inches is more than compensated for by his skill.”3 England v Rest at Kettering on 4th April. Shackleton was at inside right for the Rest, but, from all accounts, was one of the three outstanding players on the field; “time after time he beat the defence but the finishing of the forward was weak.” The international programme comprised three matches and Len played in all three: v Wale at Aberdare 6-2 v Scotland at Birmingham5-1 v. Northern Ireland at Belfast 8-3.
Strangely he was initially selected as outside right, but switched to his normal position during the game at Aberdare and “revealed himself to be a young football genius and the brains of the England attack.” Incidentally, at this time he was 5ft in height and weighed 6 stone. “Sportsmaster” in his column in the Yorkshire Sports on 11th April wrote as follows: “ Born on 3rd May 1922 Shackleton attended Horton Bank Top School, but played no football there. He proceeded to Carlton High School and in his first year he established himself in the junior team and he has been the outstanding player ever since. Besides being clever, he is also a prolific scorer and his record this year is 42 goals in 17 matches, made up as follows: - 19 in eight League games; 11 in here cup games, 8 in three Shield matches, 2 in international trials and 2 in one inter-city match. In each of two matches he has scored six goals. In contemporary papers he has been described as ‘Bradford’s wonder lad’ and ‘midget genius’. May he attain great success on 2nd May.”
BARRIE WRIGHT is in some respects the best known of Bradford’s 9 schoolboy internationals. To some extent this is because his career coincided with George Tavender time as Secretary and George’s scrapbook details every step of his career as a schoolboy. And, of course, the sheer weight of his playing career is so impressive ---- 27 Trophy games for Bradford and 6 international appearances. Barrie first came to notice when he captained the Tyersal Under 13 side, which won the City Supporters' Intermediate Trophy in October 1958, by beating Ecleshill 1-0. The Telegraph and Argus report writes of “this youngster taller than any other player in the game” being largely responsible for his side’s victory”
Less than a month later he was in the Bradford side; on 25th October the Bradford side had been beaten by Doncaster 2-0 in the 2nd Round of the English Trophy competition, and, when the team to play Gaskell in the 1st Round of the Wylie at Bradford Rovers 0n 6th November was announced, Barrie Wright was named at right back. It was an easy introduction to representative football, Bradford winning 8-0 and he kept his place in the two games v Spen Valley and Don and Dearne which completed the City side’s programme.
The 1959/1960 season was one of our most successful, yet one of our most frustrating, the team losing to Stoke (after a replay) in the 5th Round of the English and to Barnsley (who they had beaten in the English) in the semi final of the Wylie. Barrie in addition to playing in all Bradford’s matches was a regular member of the Yorkshire county side, playing at left back rather than his usual position on the right.
The following season 1960/1961 was Barrie’s “glory “ season. He had 13 games for Bradford as centre half and captain. This side did even better than that of the previous year, reaching the Quarter Final of the English and the Final of the Wylie. In both competitions they were beaten by Barnsley, who achieved the ‘double’. In addition his school team, Tyersal, did the 'double’. They won the City Supporters' Senior Final at Valley Parade, beating Belle Vue 3-2; Barrie scored 2 of the goals. Then on April 17th 1961, they beat Frizinghall in the Final of the Schools' Cup at Park Avenue (2-1) after extra time and they did this without Barrie (he was on international duty). A possible ‘treble’ eluded them, as Grange pipped them for the Walter French Trophy”. Barrie was captain of Yorkshire this season, still playing at right back, but his appearances were limited by international commitments. He did, however, play against Birmingham at Bramall Lane, a game which Yorkshire won 2-1; there first win in a series of ten matches. He was obviously Bradford’s nomination for an international trial and was selected for North v North Midlands at Stockton, North v South at Bournville (at left back) and England v The Rest at Derby (again at left back). When the side was announced to play Wales at Swansea on 23rd March, Barrie was selected at left back and was nominated as Captain into the bargain. The game turned out to be in the Daily Mirror’s words “ a seven goal romp”. The star of the occasion was Sissons (Hayes) who score 4 times.
Barrie played 7 times in all for England viz. 8th April v Eire at Coventry 8-0, 14th April v West Germany at Hagen 3-1. Here for the first time, England’s defence was tested and according to the Daily Mirror “ Alan Ogley in goal, full backs Barrie Wright and Geoff Harcombe and centre half Alan Ashcroft were all brilliant and did well to hold the Germans.”22nd April v Scotland at Edinburgh 2-2 12th May v Northern Ireland at Belfast 3-1. Obviously Barrie benefited from a powerful physique but this did not mean ha lacked skill. One of those who played with him in the Bradford 1960/1961 team tells how, when at training they split into small groups, Barrie could take on all the rest, retaining possession for long periods. Perhaps the last word should come from his ‘pal’ John Malcham, a pupil at Tyersal, who writing about him in a “Sportsman of the Week” competition, concluded by saying, “what I think is the most important, Barrie is still a modest boy, who encourages and inspires all the other boys in the school.”
DAVID NICHOLLS PLAYED FOR England just once, against France at Highbury in season 1971/1972. He was selected as a member of the international squad, as was Peter Tymczyszyn (St Bede's) in the same season, and was in the party that toured Holland at Easter, 1972, but the game at Highbury was his only appearance. He was a regular member of the Bradford side of 1971/1972 and of the Yorkshire county side.
NIGEL FORD (Belle Vue) was a member of the England Under 18 squad in the 1978/1979 season, playing as a central defender against Wales and Scotland. Nigel was a member of the Yorkshire senior squad in this and the previous season and had played in the 1975/1976 Bradford Under 15 team.