Alex Young: With Us Always – Peter Jones

They say you should never meet your heroes. I’ve been lucky enough to have met some of mine and I have never found that to be the case. They have been gracious, humble and even a little surprised to find that they are still revered long after they have hung up their boots. To a man they have been approachable and happy to talk about the good old days. There has been one exception: Alex Young. This is nothing to do with the man himself; I know from talking to people who met him that he was a perfect gentleman, always prepared to talk with real humility. I never saw him play and my memories of him are all monochrome, of the unforgettable ’66 Cup Final and being allowed to stay up late to watch “The Golden Vision”, Ken Loach’s extraordinary tribute to Alex from 1968. But I have talked to those who did see him play, and each one has...
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The Life and Times of John Cameron – Tony Onslow

It had been just four weeks since the first football knockout, won the by The Wanderers, had taken place on the Kennington Oval ground in London when a boy was born on the South West Coast of Scotland. He was destined to make FA Cup history. John Cameron was born on 13 April 1872 in the Newton district of Ayr where his family, who were in the grocery business, had finally come to settle. The 1881 census finds the business has premises on Waggon Road and John is an eight-year-old scholar. He later attended Ayr Grammar School. In 1891, the Cameron family are to be found living on Church Street in Ayr and John is now working as a Clerk for the Cunard Shipping Company. They have an office at 30 Jamaica Street, Glasgow. John Cameron began his football career with a local team who played under the name of Ayr Parkhouse. This club had been formed in 1886 and were playing...
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‘Jack O’ Both Sides’ – The Life and Times of Jack Sharp (1878-1938) – Rob sawyer

  Jack Sharp sits in exalted company as one of England’s few dual cricket and football internationals. To Evertonians he is much more than that – an iconic player, captain, FA Cup winner, club director and founder of Liverpool’s best known sports outfitters. Born on 15 February in Everton’s founding year, Jack (christened John) was the youngest child of Charles and Annie Sharp who resided at 8 Eign Street in Hereford. Dorking-born Charles was a butcher with other business interests in the town, whilst Annie hailed from County Meath in Ireland. Jack and elder brother Bertram (Bert) grew up playing football and cricket. Jack broke scoring records at centre-forward for Hereford Thistle whilst Bert performed capably at full-back. Matches were played at The Barracks ground on Harold Street, The Grapes Tavern (which Charles had a stake in) doubled as the team’s HQ. With 17 year-old Jack in the ranks, the team won the Bristol League, progressing to the Birmingham and District League. His...
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Take your foreign currency to St Lukes today for charity

The EFC Heritage Society and The Ruleteros Society are still collecting foreign currency in support of the Former Players  Foundations of the United Kingdom and Chile. We have had former players come and support us and some fans have already donated at St Lukes church before every home game. Thank you to all those who have helped so far. We are also collecting kits for Kit Aid, which can be deposited at St Luke’s church as well. KitAid now has Regional Co-ordinators around the country collecting kits, boots and equipment from Grass Roots level to the Premiership. We also receive kit from major suppliers including new kit that cannot be resold in the UK which would otherwise end up in landfill, recycling approximately 15 tonnes of unwanted kit annually. Every month KitAid volunteers collect, sort and box sets of kit and then arrange the distribution of over a hundred boxes through our charity partners. Through these partners, it not only provides shirts and football equipment but encourages inclusion, drawing people together as...
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The Costley Brothers – Was It Jim Or Was It Tom? By Tony Onslow

Thomas Halliwell Costley was born in Liverpool but began his football career in Blackburn before moving back to his birthplace in order to play for Everton. He was the younger brother of Jimmy Costley who scored the winning goal, for Blackburn Olympic, in the 1883 FA Cup final. Although Jimmy was never to sign for Everton he did represent his home town club in several attractive friendly fixtures where he deputised for his brother on the left wing. Tommy, the fifth child of the family, was born, 5 March 1865, at Rathbone Street on the south side of Liverpool town centre. His father, who lists his occupation as a “Boatman” was named James while his mother, whose maiden name was Halliwell, was called Grace. The 1871 census finds the Costley family now living in one of the back courts off Duke Street where Grace, estranged from her husband, now has seven children. The 1881 census however, informs us that the family,...
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From Leicester Fosse to Leicester City…

The Premier League champions are at Goodison Park this afternoon but did you know that the club played for 25 years after its formation before becoming Leicester City? Today’s visitors were formed in 1884 by a group of young men from a local evangelical chapel who decided to form a football team that they chose to call Leicester Fosse. This suffix was selected because the old Roman Road, known as the Fosseway, had once passed through the area. The group then all agreed to pay nine old pence membership fee and another nine pence was collected to purchase a football. They then played at several different locations before, according to local folklore, a certain Miss Westland suggested they construct an enclosure at a site on Walnut Street which, in turn, became Filbert Street. Leicester Fosse first played in the Midland League before being elected to the Football League Division Two in 1893. In 1908 they gained promotion to the top flight and faced...
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Leicester’s Favourite Blue by Ken Rogers

Any visit of Leicester City stirs up personal memories of those heady days when, as the Liverpool Echo’s chief football writer, I found myself recording the most successful phase in Everton FC’s history between 1983 and 1987. international players and the English media were at an all time low. However, Gary agreed to a special interview for Evertonians. “We just missed out on the league and the FA Cup, but it went well for me personally,” he said. “I went to Mexico full of confidence, but I didn’t think for one minute that I In the middle of this glorious spell, the Blues signed Gary Lineker, a major blow for Leicester fans. Not only did they lose the top flight’s leading goalscorer in the summer of 1985, but also one of their own. I was at Bellefield on Gary’s first day. As I left, my car was stopped at the gate by a crowd of young supporters, all shouting: “Gary, can we have your autograph?”...
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Clocking On… by Steve Johnson

Today’s 2.05pm kick- off inevitably gets supporters talking about the ‘ good old days’ when we remember all football matches being played on a Saturday afternoon at 3pm… but just how common was that 3pm time slot? Well, it depends on how far back you look! Prior to the Premier League era, most of Everton’s home matches, aside from those played in midweek, did indeed commence at the ‘traditional’ time of 3pm – but that had only been the case from the early 1960s onwards. From 1957 to late 1961 Everton’s Saturday kick-offs had alternated mostly between 3pm and 3.15pm, and before that we varied primarily amongst 2.15, 2.30, 2.45, 3.00 and 3.15pm starts! Up until World War 1 the picture was even more unsettled, with all sorts of different afternoon kick-off times in vogue – although 3.30 and 4.00pm were much more prevalent. So why the moveable start times before 1957? ‘Light’ is the answer! Everton installed floodlights in 1957 (as did Chelsea), using...
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The Blacksmith of Crossmyloof By Tony Onslow  

Despite the fact that several various publications claim that John Weir joined Everton from Hibernian, the Edinburgh-based football club, there is no evidence, according to the Victorian journalists of Liverpool, that this information is correct. He did, according to their reports, play his football in Glasgow before moving south of the River Tweed to spend the rest of his life in Northwest England. John Weir was born, 10 January 1865, at Crossmyloof, Renfrewshire, and was the third child of a fairly mature couple who had moved to the west of Scotland from their native Ireland. The 1871 census finds him still living at Crossmyloff, now absorbed in to the City of Glasgow, along with his elder brother, born 1862, whose name is Charles. By 1881, the two Weir brothers are living, along with their father, on Pollockshaws Road, near to where they had been born. John is now employed as an Apprentice Blacksmith while Charles works as a Hammerdriver. It is...
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