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Hi Graham, Thanks for your comments, it’s brilliant to hear these old stories. Your Grandfather was probably referring to the Watford vs. Lincoln FA Cup match in December 1904, which ended 1-1 with Johnny Goodall scoring the ‘Wasps’ goal.
I FIRST WATCHED WATFORD PLAY IN THE DIVISION 3 SOUTH IN 1954. MY GRANDFATHER RECALLED A GAME BETWEEN WATFORD AND LINCOLN CITY IN A CUP TIE IN THE EARLY PART OF THE 20TH CENTURY. HE CLIMBED A TREE TO WATCH THE GAME. 1959-60 WAS A BRILLIANT SEASON AND WATFORD WERE THE FIRST TEAM TO KNOCK OUT A FIRST DIVISION SIDE (BIRMINGHAM CITY) IN THE FA CUP. NOT MUCH IS TALKED ABOUT THAT ACHIEVEMENT. WATFORD HAVE HAD THE UPS AND DOWNS BUT THERE IS NO OTHER TEAM FOR ME. I REMEMBER WHEN THEY PLAYED IN BLUE AND WHITE. LONG MAY THEY LIVE AS A CLUB. THANKS FOR SOME FABULOUS GAMES OVER THE YEARS.
Hi Ken, It could be, although Ron’s signature was usually much clearer, as seen on old tickets and letters.
Is the other sig Ron Rollitt?
Hi Ben, Unfortunately, not – I’m still looking for one for myself. Cheers
Are these for sale? This game holds quite a lot of significance for my folks.
Thanks for the kind words, Stephen. Glad to have been able to do justice to your grandad’s story. He was fascinating to research and write about.
Thank you for a truthful & fair appraisal of my Grandad.RIP , Rigers .Stephen Taylor Mk 2.
classic collection. great cause!
What a wonderful and fitting tribute to Reg. He is certainly sorely missed in Abbots Langley High Street <3
A wonderful tribute to dear Reg. He would have been so proud.
i wonder if the hornet shop would consider selling miniatures of the graham taylor statue? it could be very popular!
Hi Rob, Apologies, it’s not a short answer: West Herts did indeed have a huge debt, however, this is slightly misleading. It was the sports club as a whole that carried the debt, not the football section. The club were supported by almost every successful and rich person in the town and subscriptions were held by most of them. This debt came from the investment in buying the lease for land and the building of facilities at the club, something St. Mary’s had absolutely no chance of doing. As stated, Watford St. Mary’s had also made a profit for four straight years, but to say they were a well run club might be stretching the definition. Indeed the original club (known simply as ‘St. Mary’s’) had gone out of business in 1893 due to internal wrangling and re-emerged for the 1894/95 season having taken players from Bushey Melrose and the Watford Church Institute. Also note that, while St. Mary’s made a small profit at the end of the 1897/98 season, they avoided the biggest expense a club had back in the day; St. Mary’s played a total of 39 games that season, a whopping 29 of which were home games, as well as 3 further games at Cassio Road. If they were to try to continue then they would have had to join a league, which would have increased their away games from 7 to at least double that figure. In regard to West Herts’ low attendances and ‘losing all games’; this is a great example of rival propaganda. The two games in question were pre-season trial games against unattractive opposition with what were basically reserve teams. ‘Subscribers’ were not counted as paying spectators, so both attendances were likely to have been higher. In reality, West Herts went on to average over 1,460 attendees per game that season, where figures are known. As was said in the Watford Observer on 1st January 1898 regarding West Herts and St. Mary’s attendances over the Christmas period “West Herts had much the larger gates, as was only expected”. Average known attendances for the 1897/98 season: West Herts: 1,466. St. Mary’s: 610. (This includes a 2,500 attendance for a friendly with West Herts)
I read that West Herts had a colossal debt of £844 and Watford St.Marys were a well run club with profits every year since their formation. Surely St.Marys were in a better position and West Herts were the club that were absorbed? How could West Herts be the bigger club with attendances of 128 and 134 and losing all their games?
Thank you for including this wonderful tribute to my dear brother. He would be so very happy to be remembered by his beloved Club in this way.
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