WALTHAMSTOW RANGERS FOOTBALL CLUB

1958 - 1978

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Why Now?

 

In recent years there have been several posts on the internet about Walthamstow Rangers. One article in 2011 asked about the origin of an enamel badge (which sold on E-bay for £74) showing the Rangers insignia and stirred good memories going back up to 55 years.  The club had brought rewarding experiences and through them many past friends.

 

Rangers ceased to exist nearly 40 years ago and the thought of anyone looking for 'Walthamstow Rangers' in a search engine after all that time seemed remote.  The question about the badge had prompted four replies under an item 'Who were Walthamstow Rangers?' from different former players. That article is now an item in search engines in its own right.  A further post about Rangers was made on the December 2014 mailings page of the 'Walthamstow Memories' website.

 

The posts were part of the idea for creating this web site.  Its preparation was an interesting project which has since had over 16,000 viewings.  If it reaches even more of the club’s former players and similarly brings back enjoyable memories for any of them too, that would be a bonus.  

 

There used to be boxes of photos, records and memorabilia relating to Rangers but these were gradually lost over time.  The initial information used for the web site was contained in just one remaining folder and a few photos.  Garry Meader, Roy Fentiman, Eric Allinson, Colin Arnott and Barry Ryder, in varying degrees, have all shared material that they also had kept which has been intergrated in to the site.  Eric Allinson and Colin Arnott especially produced a vein of new material.  The availability of articles and reports that were originally written for the handbooks, magazines and newsletters all those years ago has widened the scope of these pages.  Hopefully, missing information , particularly on league tables and team composition from our last three seasons in the Forest Sunday League will one day come to light.

 

 

Cockerill

Richard Peacock receiving the Smart Cup

from Stephen Cockerill in 1965

Early on in the Club’s life, the post of chairman tended to be filled by older more experienced people.   After Eric Dutton, who is mentioned earlier, Stephen Cockerill, already a respected figure on the South West Essex Junior Football League Committee, took an interest in Rangers and became our first committe chairman.  He is shown in the photograph (alongside) having just presented the Smart Cup to the under twelves at Romford’s ground in 1965, at a time before he took a personal interest in Rangers.  He remained in office until he accepted the position of chairman to the South West Essex Junior League in 1964.  Much later he took considerable interest in the Club’s Forest and District League team coming regularly to home matches at the Marsh Lane ground until his death in around 1976.

 

He was succeeded by Ron Clothier who had been secretary to Leyton F.C.  Ron took an interest in Rangers after our two cup finals on their Hare and Hounds ground in 1961-62 and 1962-63. His tenure was at the time the Club was beginning to realise its potential.  He had to resign when he moved away from the area and Dave Clarke took the reins.  Dave had been with Rangers almost from the start, first as a player and then, as a manager.  Following a bad road accident Dave retired completely from junior football in 1972.

 

The Club's later years as a multi team club saw Jim Butler take the chair.  He brought the same level of enthusiasm to the job as he had shown in all his roles until Rangers scaled back to just one team.  Jim’s first interest in the club began when son Lee joined Dick Raymond’s  successful Under Twelve side.  Later he started playing for the club before taking over as the Senior side’s team manager

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roy40003

 

Chairmen:

1960-62  Eric Dutton

1962-64  Stephen Cockerill

1964-67   Ron Clothier

1967-71     Dave Clarke

1971-73     Jim Butler

Secretary:

1958-1978  Dick Raymond

Social & Fundraising Secretaries:

1962-63   Frank Jennings

1963-64   Robert Raymond

1964-66   Roger Levoir

1966-69   Eric Browne

1969-73    Jim Butler

Minute Secretaries:

1962-66   Barry Mears

1966-68   Dave Clarke

1968-73    Florence Rowe

 

1967-68   Eric Allinson

1962-69  Colin Arnott

1965-72   Jim Butler

1967-68   Dennis Crouch

1967-70   Reg Eldridge

1962-63  Frank Jennings

1967-71    Peter Perryman

1968-71    Ray Haysman

1971-72    Tom Rogers

1962-66  Del Finch

1966-67   Vic Dennis

1965-67   John Newman

1961-77    Dick Raymond

1966-70   Graham Scriven

1964-65   Reg Sinfield

1963-72    Dave Clarke

1971-73   Jack Howell

1971-72   Tom Swain

1968-70  Dave Shand

1966-67  Charles Kirby

1969-71   Les Howard

1966-67   Jim Bird

1966-67   Steve Wasmuth

1977-78    Alan Jellife

Rangers had so many exceptional players during its twenty years' existence.  It is a little surprising that only four made it to the top level of English football although some of the reasons are explored elsewhere on this site.  But behind the scenes too, there were many committed people who worked extremely hard for the Club, giving up significant amounts of their time and energies.  

 

During the first three years, there was no need for a working committee. The Club started its life as one Under Thirteen team, conceived by Richard (Dick) Raymond and  helped by three friends Colin Lewis, Roy Fentiman and Terry Eccles. Whilst trying to find other teams for friendly matches, Dick contacted Eric Dutton who was running a team in the South West Essex Junior Football League. Through him the team was able to join the Under Fourteen division halfway through its second season. Eric went on to become the club’s first chairman, the role at that time being primarily as a mentor and figurehead.

Club Officers and Team Managers

By the start of its fourth season, as the Club grew, it became necessary to formally appoint officers and to have regular committee meetings. In recognition of their tremendous support, below is a list of all the officers and team managers.

Team Managers

The work of all our team managers was greatly valued.  Colin Arnott, Del Finch, Dick Raymond and Reg Eldridge in particular had considerable success with our boys’ teams.  Later, men's teams managed by Jim Butler, Dave Clarke and Dick Raymond all reached Premier League status in the London and Essex Border League, the North Middlesex Sunday League and the Forest District Sunday Football League respectively.  Worth mentioning as well that Jackie Eldridge (then Reg's fiance) was not only a regular supporter at Senior team matches, she gave a lot of time and effort to the Club typing our weekly newsletters over quite a long period.

 

These acknowledgements would not be complete without mention of Eddie Browne.  He followed the fortunes of his son Melvyn’s team run by Colin Arnott for several years before taking over as an extremely effective and hard working social secretary.  He organised several of the club’s presentation dances and did a marvellous job with fund raising.  

 

 

After two decades, sad though it was to see the demise of Walthamstow Rangers, at least the Club went out on a high. The last team was one of the Club's best.  It was a tremendous achievement for them to start at boys U'12's level in the Walthamstow Sunday League and then compete in the prestigious Forest District League.  The team scythed through the divisions from Six to the Premier in five rewarding years to conclude Rangers' story.

 

 

Treasurers:

1958-60   Colin Lewis

1960-61    Colin Arnott

1962-67    Robert Raymond

1967-70    Eric Allinson

1970-72    Dave Clarke

 

 

 

 

Amongst all the deserved credit given to the people who put so much time and effort in to helping run the club and its teams, one player only, Roy Fentiman, was with Rangers when it started its journey and still playing at the end.  He was a member of the club's very first team in 1958 and still with Rangers and captain of the club's last team during most of its Forest Sunday League years. Seen in the picture along side with the Division Four Cup in 1975.

And finally, David Hammond in his internet post, remembered the support given by Robert and Sarah Raymond.  Both started to take an interest around 1962.  Robert filled various roles including  treasurer and social secretary.  And when the club needed assistance they both helped by backing Rangers financially through one or two sticky patches.  Robert continued to take a keen and pivotal interest in club affairs until his death in 1969.  Sarah helped with kit washing and providing half time refreshments from quite early, and later she was also frequently at the Forest District side's matches and at the monthly Forest District League meetings held at the Three Blackbirds in Leyton.

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email: walthamstowrangersfc@gmail.com

Roy Fentiman lifting the Forest SFL Div 4 cup in 1975