Articles

Goodison Park and Women’s Football

Goodison Park and Women’s Football

December 2021 marked the centenary of the directive which flung the women’s game into the wilderness for five decades. Less than a year before this myopic edict, one of the most significant football matches in Goodison Park’s history took place – but it did not involve an Everton team. During the First World War, football matches played between women’s factory teams boosted wartime morale and raised funds for deserving causes. Goodison Park staged a charity match on 1 April 1918, contested by Aintree Munitions Ladies and North Haymarket Ladies Football Club. However, a fixture on a far grander scale took…
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Tom Robson – A Life too Short

Tom Robson – A Life too Short

By Rob Sawyer Everton Football Club has been ably served by many men and women with roots in the North East of England – Warney Cresswell, Harry Catterick, Howard Kendall, Jimmy Husband, Dave Thomas, Don Hutchison and Jill Scott spring to mind. Back in the inter-war years, Blyth Spartans, of the North Eastern League, gained an enviable reputation as a nursery club - developing young talent which blossomed at leading professional clubs throughout the land. The Toffees, notably, benefited from the loyal service of Gordon Watson – who joined from Blyth in a double-deal with his near-namesake Jack Watson in…
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You Will Go to the Ball – Son of my Father – Part 14

You Will Go to the Ball – Son of my Father – Part 14

'Who is the greatest of them all? Little, curly Alan Ball.' Alan Ball of Everton at Bellefield on July 24, 1969 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by W & H Talbot Archive/Popperfoto via Getty Images) I’m sure that sounds familiar to a majority of Evertonians who were present at the Old Lady from 1966 onwards. Personally speaking, I think I was smitten with Alan Ball before I fell head over heels in love with Everton. Bally was a footballing God to many, even making it very difficult to separate him from another hero of Goodison – Alex Young, the Golden Vision…
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‘Rags’: The Life of Cuthbert Tatters

‘Rags’: The Life of Cuthbert Tatters

By Rob Sawyer Few footballers’ names are more evocative of bygone times in the Goodison lexicon than that of Cuthbert Tatters. Cuthbert was born in County Durham, on 4 January 1915 and grew up on Sunderland Street in Easington. This was coal mining country and Cuthbert’s father, James, worked at Wheatley Hill Colliery. Cuthbert followed the same path, employed as a pit boy there.  On the football field, he played for Shotton Schoolboys, gaining county honours in 1929. He also turned out for Wheatley Hill Juniors. A photo also appears to show him, as a boy, wearing the stripes of…
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A Final Farewell to Jimmy Harris

A Final Farewell to Jimmy Harris

Thursday 26 May 2022 was the day of Jimmy Harris’s final farewell. In the mid-afternoon, the cortège transported the 88-year-old former Toffees striker past the stadium he had graced. A number of supporters had come out to applaud as the hearse drove slowly along Goodison Road. I chatted to an 81-year-old supporter from West Derby, who recalled watching Jimmy in his 1950s heyday. He told me of Jimmy’s quicksilver movement around the pitch and his rasping shot. He fondly recalled a smartly struck Harris goal against the Busby Babes. Another supporter had come all the way from Doncaster to stand…
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George Green – Illustrator Extraordinaire

George Green – Illustrator Extraordinaire

By Rob Sawyer The Toffee Lady is an enduring and iconic image, intrinsically linked to Everton FC. Since the 1950s, a Toffee Lady, or latterly a Toffee Girl, has paraded around Goodison before matches, dispensing the eponymous humbugs. But for many, the definitive Toffee Lady image takes cartoon form. It’s the Mother Noblett, famous for gracing the front page of the Football Echo for decades, looking elated, deflated or indifferent, depending on the Blues’ fortunes that day. Her ‘rival’ character was the Kopite, who showed a similar range of emotions, depending on the Liverpool result. The creator of these enchanting…
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George Fleming: The Goalscoring Bank Clerk from Arbroath

George Fleming: The Goalscoring Bank Clerk from Arbroath

Scorer of the first goal for Everton FC in the newly formed Football League of 1888   It is the summer of 1887 and the Everton team poses at the Sandon Hotel with the trophy they had just won after beating Oakfield Rovers by five goals to nothing. Two of these goals had been scored by the man sitting left of the centre row who had recently moved to Merseyside from Scotland. His name was George Spink Fleming and he was destined to etch his name into the record books of Everton Football Club. Along with his twin sister Jemima,…
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Patricia Pearson

Patricia Pearson

Kick Off - The First Lady of Football on Television     In the north west of England, there was a Friday night football programme through out the seventies called 'Kick Off', featuring all of the north west clubs in the four divisions of the Football League. The emphasis would be on the big games that were being played that weekend featuring the region’s clubs. Interviews with players, managers, including action of the region’s teams from the week before, would feature in the thirty-minute show.  The presenter was Gerald Sinstadt who joined Granada in 1969/70 until 1980-81. Two days later, a regular…
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Stephen Burtenshaw

Stephen Burtenshaw

(23 November 1935 - 17 February 2022) Portslade born Steve Burtenshaw started his football career at his local club Brighton & Hove Albion in August 1951, where he spent a staggering fourteen years as a wing half with the Seagulls appearing 237 times. His first game for Brighton was as a young 17-year-old in an away fixture at Exeter City winning 5-1. Not a bad start, eh? His football career came to a pause as he completed his national service with the Army in Germany, but continued his love for football during his time abroad. Service complete, he returned to…
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