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Football match in aid of Stanley Hospital


May 23, 1885
A football match in aid of the funds of the Stanley Hospital, one of the most deserving and necessitous charities of the city, took place at Anfield on Saturday afternoon.

It has already been clearly shown that the demands upon the resources of the institution are not met by the provision which is now in existence, and the gentlemen most deeply interested in its welfare are making effort to place “Stanley” in a position which will largely meet the requirements of the rapidly-extending district in which it is situated.

The hospital has at present accommodation for 104 beds, but the finances at the command of the committee are in such a position that only half the wants of applicants can be met. A debt of £3,000 rests on the institution and until this is paid off it will be impossible to increase the number of beds.

Charitable efforts are all the more necessary from the fact that the grand gala and bazaar which the committee intended holding in Stanley Park next year in Whit-week will have to be put off for another year in consequence of the Navigation Exhibition which is now being arranged for, and the committee accordingly appeal to the public for more liberal support than has hitherto been accorded to the hospital; and their appeal it is hoped will not be in vain.

Mr. John Houlding who has shown a deep interest in the hospital has given a practical illustration of how a game measures the funds of the charity can be easily assisted by the public. As president of the Everton Football Club, he arranged for a series of football matches to come off on the ground of that club, the gate money taken at these matches to be handed over to the treasurer of the hospital. The first of these came off on Saturday afternoon between teams from the Everton and Liverpool clubs, and was watched with much interest by a large number of people.

The company included his worship the Mayor (Alderman David Radcliffe), who with a number of other gentlemen interested in the hospital, was, prior to the match entertained to luncheon by Mr. Houlding, at his resident, Stanley House, Stanley Park. Mr. Holding’s guest besides the Mayor, were Councillors G.C. Dobell, G. Peet. P.H.. Rathbone, E. Parull, and J. Woodcock; the Rev Canon Lester (chairman of the hospital); Mr. L.E. Bennett (hon treasurer), Messrs C. Wynne, J. Parrington, Dr. Costline, Sheldon and Barr &c.

The match was opened shortly after half past three o’clock, when Mr. Houlding, as president kicked off amid loud applause. During the usual interval Mr. Houlding in a few appropriate remarks, introduced the Mayor to the players, observing that the Mayor had given evidenced of the deep interest he took, not only in the hospital, but in the game, by coming there at considerable personal inconvenience to witness the match.

His Worship, who was cordially cheered both by the players and the public expressed the pleasure be felt at securing once more the Old English game of football being followed by the young, the healthy, and the strong. It was also extremely gratifying to the friends of the Stanley Hospital to see the strong thus coming forward to help the weak and those suffering from ill-health and accident and he was sure the funds of the institution would be much increased by their efforts that day.

The hospital was not situated in the city itself, in the midst of the wealthy and the rich but amongst the working classes –those whom it was intended to benefit; and therefore it behoved not only the wealthy, but the working classes also, to put their shoulder to the wheel and help the institution in whatever way they could. It was very pleasing to see votaries of football give their service so freely in aid of the hospital, and he hoped by this and other means to see the Stanley Hospital are long placed out of debt. (Applause).

Play was then resumed. The next match in aid of the hospital takes place tomorrow, when the Bolton Wanderers will be the opposing team. The contestants in the Charitable Match were the Everton Club and a combined team selected from the Liverpool football clubs. The weather was not over-inviting but still there was a large gathering of spectators, upwards of 2,000 persons being present.

Both sides were well represented, especially that of Everton, which had the assistance of several leading members of the Blackburn Rovers first team. Shortly after the advertised time Mr. Councillor Houlding as president of the Everton club, put the ball in motion, after which Gibson on behalf of the home eleven, kicked off, when the sphere at once found its way to the Liverpool end of the field.

Eyton-Jones at once became prominent; but although nothing immediately came of it, Hutton, after a brief interval, was enabled to level an abortive shot at goal. Pressure at the Everton end was maintained, and although Marriott relieved, Morris promptly returned to the attack, and succeeded in placing the first goal for Liverpool.

Favoured by the wind, the visitors were still enabled to keep up a very considerable degree of pressure; although Everton chiefly through the instrumentality of Fecitt, Higgins, Farmer and Dobson, were enabled occasionally to break away, but their shooting at goal was lacking in precision. Eventually Hutton became conspicuous and a little later Morris sent in a shot which Lindsay unfortunately for his side passed through his own goal thus adding a second point for Liverpool, shortly after which the whistle signalled half-time.

Immediately upon restarting Bailey was called upon to defend his charge but although for a time this was successfully accomplished. Farmer sent in a shot which completely upset the Liverpool custodian. Shortly afterwards the same player enabled Douglas to register a second goal, while hardly a minute had elapsed when Pickering added a third, this last feat being signal for a general outburst of appreciative cheering.

The Evertonians were now being materially aided by the wind, and although a rainstorm swept over the ground the game was continued with unabated vigour. Fecitt was now seen in some exceedingly fine play, while Higgins was also playing exceptionally well. The Evertonians had gained the upper hand by this time, and after Higgins had driven the ball against the crossbar, Pickering rushed up and scored the fourth goal for Everton.

The Liverpool men now made a determined effort to retrieve their position, and were so far successful that after a few minutes further play, Wilson, as the result of a judicious crossover by Morris, scored a magnificent goal from half-back. The play now became most exciting, but again the Evertonians loyally answered the call of their captain, and finally Douglas who was well aided by Whittle, inaugurated a further attack upon the unfortunate Liverpool fortress, which for the fifth time was reduced, Farmer being credited with the concluding point scored in the game.

Afterwards Dick, Suter, Hutton, and Douglas exhibited fine play for their respective sides, and when the whistle blew for the cessation of play a well-earned victory remained with Everton by five goals to three.

The following were the teams:
Everton: – M. Lindsay, goal; T. Marriott, (Captain) and F. Suter (Blackburn Rovers), backs; J. Pickering, M. Higgins, and Dobson, half-backs; Douglas, and Whittle, right wing; Fecitt, centre, Farmer, and W. Gibson, left wing.

Liverpool: – H.A. Bailey (Ramblers) (captain), goal; Tom Veitch (Bootle) and A. McCallum (Stanley), backs; G. Galbraith (Bootle), W. Wilson and Alec Dick (Stanley), half-backs; W. George (St. Mary’s) and T. Morris (Cambrian), right wing; McGregor, (Stanley), centre; J. Eyton-Jones and G. Hutton (Bootle), left-wing.

It is probable that the anticipations of the promoters of the match will be fully realised, and that at least £100 will be handled over to the treasurer of Stanley Hospital.
(Liverpool Mercury: May 25, 1885)

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