Shropshire Star

Shropshire town's football story to be told in exhibition

Townspeople have been urged to search their cupboards and attics for memorabilia and photographs of Shifnal's football heroes for inclusion in a special exhibition.

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LAST COPYRIGHT SHROPSHIRE STAR JAMIE RICKETTS 17/02/2023 - The Shifnal Archives Centre based out of The Old Fire Station in Shifnal are having a Shifnal Football exhibition on March. They are hoping people will come forward with memorabilia. In Picture: Chairman Gerald Nickless.

The Shifnal Local History Group is planning to stage the exhibition, entitled Shifnal's Football Story, at its base at the Old Fire Station on March 4.

Volunteers from the group plan to stage the exhibition from 10am to 4pm on the day, when both admission and refreshments will be free-of-charge.

Jenny Johnson, a member of the group, said: "We hold The Shifnal Archive which is open every Friday afternoon from 2pm to 4pm and on Saturday mornings from 10am to noon.

"We wanted to celebrate the 150 years since William Kenyon-Slaney, from Shifnal, became the first footballer to score a goal in an international match between England and Scotland.

"That game took place in March 1873 in Scotland.

"However, we also wanted to tell the area's football history as we have two iconic football shirts of Bert Williams, an England goalie, and one which belonged to international referee Jack Taylor."

Jack, who was born in Wolverhampton, lived in Shifnal. There will also be a signed football from the England squad of 1992 on display.

"When the squad trained at Lilleshall players stayed at the Park House Hotel and although some of the signatures on the ball are faded, those of Paul Gascoigne and Tony Adams, Alan Shearer and the manager Graham Taylor are still visible.

"We are delighted that local people have been coming forward to loan football programmes and memorabilia.

"We are now asking people to search their attics and cupboards for photographs and anything relating to Shifnal's football history.

"Recently through a posting on Facebook we found some information on another player called Harry Hampton.

"He played for Aston Villa between 1904 and 1920.

"Harry was born in Wellington and started his playing career with Shifnal Juniors in the late 19th Century.

"We believe that many people will be interested in Shifnal's Football Story and anyone wanting to loan items for this special exhibition can call in during our opening hours on Fridays and Saturdays or bring along memorabilia on March 4."

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