October 14, 1976
Ken Addison, Liverpool Football Club’s commercial manager, was sitting quietly in his office one Saturday afternoon when an irate supporter suddenly burst in on him.
“He yelled at me, ‘It’s all your fault we’re losing,’ took his coat off – and offered me outside,” said Ken, grinning at the memory.
This match-day experience is just one of the store of memories Ken has of his 14 years as one of Liverpool’s important backroom boys.
“The thing is that we’re always on view to the public in the development office,” said Ken. “So we get all sorts of queries and funny incidents.
“I was sitting there one Saturday when a man rang all the way from Christchurch New Zealand, wanting to know the result of the Bruges game. I had to tell him the match wasn’t being played till the following Tuesday!
“Then we get foreign visitors who have come specially to see the club and people with queries about the players. There’s never a dull moment.”
Reds fans will find Ken and his staff housed in palatial new surroundings on Saturday. The brand new development office and souvenir shop is part of the new £300,000 complex at the back of the Kop which was officially opened today.
It is a far cry from the builder’s site but in the car park which was Ken’s first office when he was first appointed in 1962. He was working as appeals organiser for a charity at the time he answered an advertisement in a national newspaper for “an organiser for a First Division club.” And as a self-confessed “dyed-in-the-wool-Liverpudlian,” he was keeping his fingers crossed that it was Liverpool.
He started organising draws, introduced the Golden Goal tickets the following year – they were one of the first First Division clubs to do so – and other money-raising events. At first these raised around £16,000 a year – now that figure has grown to £50,000 a year, and Ken now has a staff of six to keep things ticking over.
“That sum spent out on developing Anfield out of the Development Association has been in excess of £500,000,” he said. “It’s all been done with the help from our supporters as well as our agents and staff.”
Supporters will find a greater selection of goods at the souvenir shop in the new development office.
“We’re getting lots of new items, such as barrel bags, duffel bags, coloured team posters and an extended range of clothing,” said John Robinson, shop manager.
(Source: Liverpool Echo: October 14, 1976; via http://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) © 2018 Findmypast Newspaper Archive Limited