Club Centenary Brochure 1872-1972

Club Centenary Brochure 1872-1972


On 29th November 2012 Southport RFC will be 140 years old.

To set the scene for yet another epoch event in the annals of the club a copy of the Centenary Brochure produced forty years ago can now be viewed..This gives a fascinating insight in to the history and state of affairs of the club then, and sets the scene for the club as it is now.

As well as a detailed chronology there are many snippets to pick out:

• ‘Gibbs glances back….memories of 1913’ – Charles Gibbs takes us back to the days of the First World War.
• ‘From Victoria Park to Hillside’ – a feature by first team skipper 1931-2 John Pilling on the grounds, now updated on the Grounds of Southport RFC page (see Club Info)
• ‘Scott recalls the famous Sale sevens’ – memories by Bobby Scott, a club legend who was the last Southport player to win a full Lancashire Cap. Bobby’s son Malcolm recently called in to the club and kindly donated some memorabilia.
• ‘Have you heard the one about….Yet another one from the House of Wainwright’ – the Wainwright family was tied up with the club since 1906 and is featured in the Club War and Schools History (see Club Info)
• Panoramic photograph of the ground and 76 members including Alan Havard and Les Jackson.
• ‘England trialist still has scar and boots to prove it’ – former player and well known local historian Harry Foster recalls his time at the club.
• ‘…and that visitor from the Visiter’ – Arnold Heald, the assistant sports editor of the Visiter, contributes a piece on reporting rugby over the years, backed upwith an advertisement.
• Other iconic advertisers of the age included Marks & Spencer, The Prudential, Littlewoods, Jacob’s Club Biscuit, Peter Dominic, Whitbread Tankard, Leyland Paints, Subuteo Table Rugby, Williams & Glynn’s, Royal Navy, RAF, and Brooke Bond Oxo.
• ‘Maybe we lost it at the palace’ – so writes Gordon Berwick, Captain from 1956-61 under whom the first XV had won a then record 19 games in 1958-9.
• ‘When winter went faster than beer’ –according to former player David Marsh, twice English amateur open champion (1964 and 1970) and member of the Walker Cup team (1959 and 1970), a future Captain of the R&A (1990) Chairman of Everton (1991-94) and MBE.
• ’23 years hard labour but I wouldn’t have missed a minute of it’ – the memories of Jack Glassberg, half way through his playing career of 39 years at the club and future President.
• ‘Tomorrow’s Hillside’ – an image of the new building plans for the club house, a picture of the Colts and mention that the youngsters are about the future of the club. Some things haven’t changed!
• Unfortunately some things have and lost local advertisers include Gore’s Coaches, T.R. Highton, William Rimmer & Co., Moulon Rouge, Peter Pans Playground, Dixieland and Toad Hall.
• But some survive such as The Bold Hotel, S. Rostron Builders, Hewitt’s, Ashleys, and Duerdens, and
• Lots of illustrations and photographs including one of players using the famous Southport communal bath! Those were the days.

This whets the appetite for a wonderful 140th season and beyond and thanks to Mark Howard and Janet his secretary, and Mike Sweeney you can read it in full by clicking on Documents below (be warned its a big one - 22.7MB).

Enjoy, Graham


Centenary Brochure 1872-1972