The Football League: The annual meeting of 1895


May 20, 1895
The Football League held their annual meeting yesterday, at the Old Boar’s Head, Manchester, when there was a large attendance. Prior to the evening gathering the management were in conference in respect of certain allegations. The first of these was the case against Aston Villa for having approached Jimmy Crabtree, of Burnley, and after a lengthy inquiry the committee found the charge not proved. The next case was one in which Blackburn Rovers were alleged to have approached Billy Dorrell, of Aston Villa. After hearing a lot of evidence, the case was adjourned pending the appearance of Mr. Ryden.

Afterwards a special meeting was held at the request of the Midland clubs, and the question of the “League split” then came on for discussion. Derby County moved that all resolutions shall be decided by a two-thirds majority instead of a three-fourths as at present, and that the League shall be governed by representatives of each of the 32 clubs. Grimsby Town seconded. The proposition was lost, not receiving the requisite three-fourths majority, the voting being 17 for Derby County’s motion, and 12 against.

Sunderland claimed £350 from Everton through the alteration of the League fixture, and the Management Committee referred the claim to the Appeal Committee.

In the evening the annual meeting was presided over by Mr. John James Bentley. Liverpool brought forward a motion to extend the League to 20 clubs in each division, but it was lost. It was decided that in future no club shall engage men for matches especially, but that men who have played four games, being resident in the town of the club for four weeks, shall play.

A proposal to have neutral linesmen with power similar to those in English Cup-ties was negative. It was resolved that no exceptional expense be allowed to referees. Mr. Lee (Leicester Fosse) proposed Mr. Ford (West Bromwich Albion) for president, and Mr. Radford (Nottingham Forest) seconded. Mr. John Lewis (Blackburn Rovers) proposed Mr. Bentley, and Mr. Greenwood (Woolwich Arsenal) seconded. Mr. Bentley was elected by 17 to 14. Messrs. Haigh (Sheffield United) and Ford were elected vice-presidents, and Mr. Harry Lockett secretary.

The management committee were appointed as follows: – Messrs. Dunkley, Richard Molyneux, Bellamy, and Parlby. The clubs elected to the vacant positions in the League were Lincoln City, Crewe Alexandra, Burslem Port Vale, and Loughborough. Messrs. Clegg, Charles Crump, and Forrest were appointed the Appeal Committee.
(Source: Liverpool Mercury: May 21, 1895)

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