MOTORBIKE STARS SPONSOR FORMER PLAYERS
Two of Chester’s biggest
stars from the world of motorbike racing have linked
up to support Chester City Former Players Association.
Charlie Williams and Bill Smith,
both former Grand Prix competitors and winners at
the Isle of Man TT races, are to sponsor the Association’s
newsletter for the next 12 months.
The two now run successful motorbike
businesses in the city. Charlie owns the bike kit
and parts suppliers Everything But Bikes in Trafford
Street and Bill’s motorbike showroom Bill
Smith Motors is a well-known landmark on Tarvin
The move reflects the affection
both men have for their hometown football team.
Charlie Williams said: “I
was never a big football fan but my father was passionate
about Chester. Our house in Kelsall was painted
blue and white because those were Chester’s
colours. My dad used to take me down to Sealand
Road in the 1960s when I would watch Gary Talbot
play. We went every Saturday without fail –
first team and reserves, often riding in on his
motorbike with me on the back.
“So for me this sponsorship
is partly about nostalgia, and also about putting
something back into the football club. The resurrection
of the club recently has been great to see and in
fact I took my two grandsons Charlie and Louis down
to a game last season and was delighted to see the
enthusiasm there, especially from the youngsters.”
Bill Smith said: “I’ve
lived in Chester all my life and I’m a Chester
fan through and through, as was my father and his
father before him. I used to go in the 1950s when
my brother-in-law Keith Griffiths played in goal
for Chester. I can remember Billy Foulkes and Tommy
Astbury, Trevor Walters and Dave McNeil. They were
real characters and we used to get gates of eight
to ten thousand at Sealand Road. And the way things
are going now, I can see big gates coming back.”
Gary Talbot, president of the
Former Players Association, said: “It is wonderful
that these two big names from another sport have
such warm memories of watching Chester in their
younger days. Their support will enable us to print
our newsletter in colour which will maximise its
impact with our members and supporters of the club
Copies of the latest newsletter
are on sale at the club shop at the Exacta Stadium.
Bill Smith, Gary
Talbot and Charlie Williams.
8 June 2011
Several players took part
in the Former Players Association’s first
golf event at Eaton Golf club today. Pictured are
Graham Abel, Derek Draper, Ken Roberts, Alan Tarbuck,
Gary Talbot, Grenville Millington and Bob Delgado.
16 May 2011
SURPRISE FOR VETERAN FAN DOMINIC LALLY
FC fan 90 year old Dominic Lally from Mynydd
Isa was delighted to receive a signed Chester
shirt from Association members Grenville Millington
and Alan Tarbuck.
Dominic saw his first game
in 1929 at the age of eight and has been a
fan ever since. His favourite player was 1930’s
legend Fred Bennett and his favourite game
was the 3-0 cup victory over the League champions
Leeds United in 1974, he says “it was
an amazing game because Chester won it so
easily.” Other memorable games were
Chester’s 2-1 defeat at Manchester United
in 1965 and the draw with Chelsea in 1952.
Dominic played himself as
a goalkeeper for Cestrian Alex and later became
a referee and trained with Chester FC in the
1960’s who “welcomed me with open
arms.” He also had trials for the armed
forces team in Italy in 1943.
Grenville and Alan are planning
to invite Dominic as a VIP guest at the club
in the new season.
© Evening Leader
4 May 2011
LATEST COMMITTEE MEETING
The committee met at the Cheshire
View on Wednesday May 4th. In attendance were Gary
Talbot, Grenville Millington, Alan Tarbuck, Bob Delgado,
John Evans, Chas Sumner and Charlie Lambert, with
apologies from Graham Abel. It was the first meeting
since Chester FC clinched the Evostick North Championship.
Grenville Millington put on record the Association's
delight at the outcome of the new club's first season.
We will be writing to the club formally to pass on
Great news reported by Chas Sumner was that membership
currently stands at 105, with others waiting to have
their membership confirmed. Plans to hold a Christmas
event open to the public were reviewed in the light
of the football club also deciding to hold a major
event around Christmas time.
The opinion was that having two such events at around
the same time would not be constructive and we will
therefore look to rearrange our event for a date in
the autumn. Our first Golf Day will take place at
Eaton GC on Friday July 8th. This is open to members
only. Cost is £35 - any member wanting to play
should send a cheque payable to Chester City Former
Players Association to Chas Sumner or Alan Tarbuck
to secure their place. Numnbers are limited to 20,
first come first served.
27 March 2011
The committee met at the Cheshire
View on Wednesday March 16th. Alan Tarbuck reported
that he and chairman Grenville had been to see Trevor
Storton who was suffering from cancer and described
how delighted Trevor was to see them. This has since
been put into a different perspective by the recent
tragic news that Trevor has died. Grenville paid a
warm tribute to his ex-team-mate in an interview with
the Chester Chronicle.
The FPA was represented by John
Evans and Dennis Reeves at the funeral of another
Chester defensive stalwart John Butler, in Nottingham.
On a happier note the committee
approved plans for the various sporting and social
events which we’ve been organising for 2011.
Several dates are now on the calendar including
our Spring Sociao on March 31st at Chester Boughton
Hall Cricket Club, Golf Day at Eaton GC on July
8th, and an Autumn Social at Chester Boughton Hall
on September 15th. Bolton Wanderers have accepted
our challenge to a bowls match on a date to be agreed
and we hope to have another bowls event with the
supporters. Any former player who would like to
play in the golf or the bowls, please contact Chas
Former players are also invited
to attend Chester FC’s home game on April
9th v Cammell Laird. The club is making this a special
occasion to honour past players and hope as many
as possible will go along. Please let Chas know
if you’d like to be there.
Chairman Gren announced that
he wanted us to recruit 10 new members in the next
ten days as we continue our push towards 100 members.
These notes are being written 10 days after the meeting
and in the meantime 11 new members have signed up!
10 February 2011
The committee met on January
19th. Bob Delgado and Graham Abel were formally co-opted
onto the committee. Plans for a series of social and
sporting activities were discussed. It is hoped to
finalise dates in the near future. Alan Tarbuck said
that plans were under way at Chester FC to invite
a lot of former players to the home game versus Harrogate
Railway Athletic on March 26th.
The FPA's second newsletter has been published. The
chairman, Grenville Millington, asked that the committee's
appreciation be recorded of the work of Charlie Lambert
and Steve Mansley in putting it together. Both Grenville
and Gary Talbot are present in the boardroom and Legends
Lounge on most home matchdays, assisting Alan Tarbuck
in meeting and entertaining match sponsors. Chas Sumner
reported that he had assisted a Bristol-based journalist
to contact Jimmy Humes and Hugh Ryden for a series
of articles about former players at Bristol Rovers
where they both played before joining Chester. The
articles had been published in the Sunday Independent
with a complimentary reference to the FPA.
Next committee meeting will be in March.
27 November 2010
We have also lost John Butler,
one of the stalwarts of the Chester team of the 1960s.
John was 73. He played 220 times at centre-half for
the club between 1962 and 1968, scoring twice. John
was a member of the Former Players Association. We
send our condolences to his family.
PAUL RAYNOR and JOHN BUTLER
The Association was
deeply saddened to hear of the death of Paul Raynor
from cancer at the age of 53. A Chester fan as a
boy Paul achieved his dream by making his debut
for the club at the age of 17, going on to play
230 times in two spells at Sealand Road. After retiring
he moved to Nantwich and joined Cheshire Constabulary.
The FPA sends its condolences to Paul’s wife
Sue and their two children.
25 November 2010
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
The first AGM of the CCFC Former Players Association
was held on Wednesday November 24th 2010 at the
Present were: Gary Talbot (president), Grenville
Millington (chairman), Alan Tarbuck (treasurer),
Chas Sumner (secretary), Charlie Lambert (media
officer), Bob Delgado, John Evans, Dennis Reeves,
and Mickey Fields. Apologies were received from:
Bobby Hunt, Peter Greenwood, Eddie Rampling, Terry
Owen, Reg Barton and John Butcher.
Grenville opened the meeting by making everyone
welcome and reflecting on how far the FPA had come
in its first 12 months. To have recruited 64 members
and organised three events was an excellent start.
He compared it with the simultaneous progress made
by the football club itself and emphasised what
a fine job the board and staff at Chester FC are
doing. The matchday experience these days is a delight,
he said. He added that it was wonderful for ex-players
to be made so welcome at the football ground, instead
of being shunned as at certain times in the past.
The re-election of officers was proposed by Bob
Delgado, seconded by John Evans and carried unanimously.
Grenville reported that membership stood at 64 and
he wanted to build on that in the coming year. The
meeting agreed to aim for a figure of 100 members
by the next AGM.
Members expressed the desire to build up the association’s
funds so that financial help could be offered to
former players who need a helping hand. At the moment
we are not in a position to make the sort of grants
that the likes of Everton's former players association
do. Grenville pointed out that there are other ways
in which we can give ex-players a boost. Simply
letting them know they are not forgotten can work
wonders. The association will be sending ‘get
well’ cards to members Bobby Hunt and Hugh
Ryden who are recovering from operations.
The meeting recorded its deep sadness at the untimely
death of Paul Raynor. Most of those present knew
Paul personally. The association sends its deep
condolences to Paul’s family.
There was discussion about events which might take
place in 2011. It was agreed to draw up a schedule
for the year in the next few weeks, and this would
form the basis of an annual series of events.
Alan Tarbuck submitted his treasurer’s report
which recorded a surplus at the bank of £510.60.
In closing the meeting the chairman thanked everyone
for coming and speculated as to where both the FPA
and the football club might be in another 12 months’
3 August 2010
EX-PLAYERS TAKE UP
It’s a whole new bowl
game for Chester City’s ex-players!
The Former Players Association
has called up a team with a difference to take on
a supporters’ team at bowls on Sunday. (August
The match will take place at the
Cheshire View, Plough Lane, Christleton, CH3 7PT,
starting at 2pm.
The footballers will be captained
by former striker Alan Tarbuck who said: “It
doesn’t matter whether the sport is bowls
or football, there is still a competitive buzz.
The lads are all looking forward to this.”
Tarby’s line-up includes
some of the most popular players to wear the Chester
colours including Dai Draper and Grenville Millington
from the legendary 1974-75 promotion and League
Cup semi-final team, flying winger Ian Moir who
starred in the late 1960s, and winger Elfed Morris
and goalkeeper Dennis Reeves of the much-loved team
from the mid-sixties.
Other ex-players who will be demonstrating
their skill on the bowling green include Ray Carter,
Bob Delgado and Bobby Hunt.
Alan said: “There will be
a fair amount of nostalgia and reminiscences about
past football memories and I’m hoping members
of the public will come along and meet the players
who played for Chester at different times.
“There’s also a lot
to talk about in the present day. We are all delighted
by the terrific progress being made by the new Chester
All spectators are welcome
– admission free.
27 July 2010
TARBY ON BOARD
FPA committee member
Alan Tarbuck has taken on another responsibilty. Alan
has been elected to the board of the new Chester FC
and attended his first meeting last night.
The ex-Chester striker will ensure
that the club’s former players have a high
profile as the supporter-owned set-up continues
its welcome process of building bridges with all
parts of the football community.
The FPA is delighted that two
other committee members contributed significantly
to the fund-raising event held by City Fans United
at Chester Racecourse. Gary Talbot’s photo of
the Famous Five, signed by all five members of the
celebrated 1964-65 forward line, raised £1,050.
And Chas Sumner’s club history ‘On the
Borderline’, signed by Chas and many ex-players,
19 July 2010
Our most senior
member Billy Windle has reached a notable
milestone – his 90th birthday!
Billy played for Chester
from season 1951-52 to 1954-55, making 127
League appearances and scoring 20 goals.
Windle played on the left wing and featured
in both our famous FA Cup matches against
Chelsea in 1952, setting up the first goal
in the 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge.
Billy still lives in Chester
and FPA treasurer Alan Tarbuck dropped in
to congratulate him on his big day.
Many happy returns Bill
from all the Former Players.
by Rick Matthews
6 May 2010
EX-PLAYERS WELCOME DEVA
Chester City Former
Players Association welcomes the decision by Cheshire
West and Chester Council to award tenancy of the Deva
Stadium to City Fans United. We believe this is the
We support the fans' ambition to create a progressive,
community-orientated club. We look forward to forming
a positive relationship with the new club.
As players who wore the shirt with pride we were dismayed
by the problems over the last few years ending in
the sad day when the club was wound up.
We now want to congratulate CFU and Cheshire West
and Chester Council for the way they have worked constructively
to restore football to the city and wish City Fans
United and everyone involved every success.
Grenville Millington – Chairman
A BIG THANK YOU
Following the demise of Chester City FC the players
who wore the blue shirt with pride over decades
of footballing history want to thank the fans and
the public for their magnificent support. On behalf
of them all the club’s Former Players Association
issues this statement.
There are literally hundreds of
players who have represented Chester City FC over
many generations. At this sad time when the club
has disappeared we want to say a big thank-you to
everyone who supported us. Fans, the public of Chester,
colleagues, the staff at the club, the people who
helped in a voluntary capacity – you all helped
us achieve our dreams of playing professional football.
Without you, we wouldn’t have had our careers.
Many of us were encouraged to keep our careers going
despite setbacks with form and fitness. The way
fans got behind us when we were fighting back after
injury is something that still means a lot. The
supporters who followed us to away games have a
special place in our memories. We would see them
at places like Torquay and Exeter and their loyalty
always inspired us.
Many of us are local lads, born
and bred in or close to Chester. We followed City
as fans when we were young. When we went on to wear
the shirt ourselves the support we got was unbelievable.
Many of us have fond memories of Sealand Road where
we seemed to be so close to the crowd and had a
great rapport. A lot of us don’t come from
Chester but moved here to join the club. In many
cases this changed our whole lives – we stayed,
put down roots and we still love it when people
come up and talk to us about the “old days.”
We are devastated by the way the
club ended but now we are all trying to be positive
about the future of football in Chester. The present-day
supporters are incredible, the way they are working.
We support the initiative of City Fans United to
set up a new club and wish them every success. There
is a horizon, and there are brighter days beyond
it. For now, we thought it was the right time to
say thank you, on behalf of all the past players
of Chester City FC.
Chester City Former Players
Gary Talbot – President
Grenville Millington – Chairman
Alan Tarbuck – Treasurer
GREEN LIGHT FROM THE OTHER BLUES
Laurence Lee, chairman of Everton FC’s
Former Players Foundation, has given the Chester
City FPA his full backing.
Laurence attended this month’s
meeting of the Chester FPA committee and said: “I
think it is terrific that Chester’s ex-players
have set up an association. They have my full support
and if I can help in any way, I will.”
The Everton FPF is the leading
club organisation for former footballers in the
UK. Laurence passed on a lot of valuable advice
and was impressed by the progress made by his Chester
counterparts in the six months since we formed the
Meanwhile the committee is
finalising the written constitution of the FPA.
Coming up in 2010 will be the launch of a printed
newsletter, our second social evening for members,
and sports activities which are likely to include
a football match and a bowls event.
15 January 2010
NEWS ON RON DAVIES
Sky Sports commentator Martin
Tyler has recently been in touch with the Former
Players Association and sent this email:
You might remember that I am Chester
born, and in visiting my family in Tattenhall and
Christleton, saw a fair bit of my hometown team
when I was growing up.
It goes without saying that I
have been distraught at the recent history of the
I was very pleasantly surprised
to hear of your work with a former players association
and as a devotee of the 64-65 camapaign delighted
that Gary Talbot and Hughie Ryden were at your Xmas
bash. I have also noticed that Elfed Morris is winning
awards as a groundsman like he used to win those
far post headers!
The main reason for writing is
that just before Christmas I had a long phone conversation
with Ron Davies – my all time hero. He is
living in New Mexico and has sadly just lost his
wife. But he sounded in good spirits nonetheless
and the quality of his life has been improved by
hip replacements paid for by Southampton fans. We
talked about his early times at Chester and he still
pays tribute to Bill Lambton making him train with
army boots on so that when he put his football boots
on he felt so light and was so good in the air.
He said he still has two sisters
living in North Wales, and his brother Paul who
played for Arsenal is still around. Southampton
want him to come over for a reunion but there are
no definite plans.
I intend to keep in touch with
Ron, and I will find out if he has an EMail address
so that you can make contact.
Meanwhile best wishes to you,
Chas, and FPA.