Well-known in local football circles, Mike Clarke has written a few lines for us on the history of the game involving Oswestry clubs and in particular the link with Queen’s Park.
The Scottish side visit Park Hall on September 8 in the Irn-Bru Cup.
The club (Oswestry FC) was formed in 1875, for many years given as 1876. The 1860 quoted in many places is wrong.
Oswestry FC continued until the end of the 1891/2 season when it was disbanded.
Then in 1893, Oswestry United was formed and they played on until 1914. After the war, a meeting to revive the club saw a change of name for the start of the 1920/21 season and OSWESTRY TOWN FC was born.
The Oswestry scorer v Queen’s Park in 1883, William T. Foulkes, was from Llanrhaeadr and he had two caps for Wales, v Ireland in 1884 and Scotland in 1885.
Foulkes was also skipper of Oswestry White Stars who won the Welsh Cup in 1884 that same season as the FA Cup game. Confusingly, the press claim the clubs had merged their forces for a crack at Welsh Cup. That win was the first time the cup had gone over the border.
In fact, eight of the players who faced Queen’s Park turned out for the Stars v Druids in the Welsh Cup final. William H Davies had four Welsh Caps, the first to gain one. He was also scorer of Wales’ first goal, v England in 1879. He had played for St Oswalds in 1874, the town’s first club.
Perhaps the most interesting is R T Gough, a Welsh cap with winners/runners up medals in Welsh Cup. His fame as a referee and administrator was perhaps greater,
Richard Gough took charge of five Welsh Cup finals between 1896-1906 and several international games. He later held the post of President of the Welsh FA (1910-1934) and also sat as a member of the English FA, a situation that is believed to be unique.
Five who faced the Scots had Welsh caps. George Farmer, who had two caps, left Oswestry for Everton in 1885, along with Bolton’s George Dobson. They became the first professionals to be signed by Everton.
Regards players for TNS and Queen’s Park, as of now I’m aware of just the one, JOHN WHELAN. A Liverpool lad who played for Llansantffraid, I think he attended Alsager College. His twin also played for Saints and I believe he was a member of the Welsh Cup winning team.
If I have the right man he played for Queen’s Park from March 99 until Sept 2006. He made 140 apps, 38 subs and scored 27 goals.