Shrewsbury House – The Football Story

We have started on a new project in our Archives group titled ‘Shrewsbury House – The Football Story’.  We are trying to gather as much material as possible that tells the story of the club’s football since 1903.  We haven’t managed to get quite that far back but we do have a photo of a club football team in 1907!

We’re not quite sure whether this turns into a book or what at this stage, but we have an impressive collection of records, words and pictures already. Below are a couple of extracts.

1949/51 PJ Match report v St Marys
1950 See photos PJ Team listed on photo Billy Jones on National Service reports from abroad in a letter and includes a match report
1951 PJ Match report v Florence Institute
1954 O.Boys Finalists of Houston cup George Marsden Full team list available via G.M. Played at Anfield in front of c 600

Both Chris and Billy Lloyd, who later famously signed for Tranmere Rovers, could write a book about the Shewsy, remembering stories like old Billy Dalrymple, the storekeeper who predated Alf in the mid 1960’s, and his dishing out the footy gym kit and of course the ex-army issue brown pumps. “You were lucky to get two pumps the same size with laces and no holes before kicking off in top gym” says Billy Lloyd.

There were success stories  – winning the first ICI regional 7 a side tournament in Widnes – team: Arthur Rawlings, Chris Gallagher, big Billy Jones, Arthur Towers, Ian McElwee, Davie Hunt, Stan Coleman, all Shewsy stalwarts in their day.

Shewsy Summer Fair 2018

Know Your Neighbour Day

As a way of welcoming new people into our community, the Shewsy, along with St. Peters church, arranged a Know your Neighbour event at the club on Saturday 20th April 2018.

In the 10 weeks leading up to the day, volunteer Lisa Dumbell facilitated a world foods cookery programme – getting traditional recipes from new residents’ native countries and attempting to cook them with senior club members (funded by Warburton’s).  Some of the dishes included were from countries such as Libya, Italy, Poland, Czech Republic, Turkey and India.

Upon inviting old/new residents to the event, we also gave them the opportunity to prepare a dish traditional to their country of origin. We also provided the money to cover the cost of the meals so there would be no financial strain on the participants. This was funded by a grant received from LCVS.

The aim of the project was to promote community cohesion by making people feel welcome in the Everton community, and what better way to get people together than their love of food. We have found that people are proud of their roots and are more than happy to display their cultural heritage through food.

During the day we had many new residents turn up with their families, proudly introducing the dish they had provided – all of which were delicious and thoroughly enjoyed by all. There were 15 different countries represented throughout the day with dishes provided from each and recipes shared amongst newly found friends. The countries were Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Iraq, Poland, Syria, Yemen, Czech Republic, Hungary, Zimbabwe, Morocco, West Africa, Morocco, Iran and England.

We were fortunate enough to also be blessed with beautiful weather so were able to make full use of the neighbouring Everton Park Nature Garden (which many of the residents had been curious about as it is gated and used mainly for supervised groups). This was an extremely popular choice amongst attendees who loved the natural beauty of the place.

The event was due to end at 2pm but people were having such a great time the vast majority left later and carried the day on in the local park just across the road from the centre, where the children played in the sun and the parents stayed and chatted amongst themselves.

We have since received really positive feedback from the public about the event and are hoping to make this happen more often, with the next date provisionally set for our annual Summer Fair on the 23rd June.

“Sharing a meal is a simple, yet sacred occasion. It is a universal act that is important to building relationships within people groups.  Intentionally eating together creates time and space to engage in the spiritual and intellectual levels that are unique to human beings.  Sharing food cultivates community because the implications of the meal extend beyond the time of eating together.  While there are other places people meet, gathering around a meal is the most accessible because if nothing else, everyone must eat.”  Katz, R, 2012


Free Health & Pamper Event

Team Leader’s report – Dec-Jan 2018

Team leaders report to Board of Management for 15th January 2018


The first few months have been great I am thoroughly enjoying my role as team leader. After a well – deserved Christmas break the staff team came back on 5th January refreshed and full of ideas. The staff training went really well and we came up with some new ideas for planning and recording sessions and a new rota for junior club to enable it to be more structured. The benefits of having this in place are showing already as this first week back has been the most enjoyable for a while. We have recently recruited ex member Kenny O’Connell for one session per week  to try and get the music rooms back to their full potential.

Jade has joined Julie on the bank staff as she is no longer able to commit to a set session/s.

Sharon is currently working towards her NVQ level 3 in youth work studies, something I feel all staff should be aiming towards.

Staff team:

Frank Kenny (8 sessions), Sharon Dolby (4 Juniors 1,seniors) Ryan Fitzpatrick (3 seniors), Dean Williamson (2 Junior, 2 senior) Daisy Gill (4Junior) Selma Brown (2 seniors, 1 junior) Kenny O’Connell (1 session music)

Volunteers: Thomas Butler 2 sessions per week. Lisa Dumbell currently committed to 1 after school session per week.

Roy McGaw, Lorraine Mangan

Building, facilities and amenities

The décor in the club is looking much tidier, again I’d like to thank the probation service for providing free labour and doing a great job, the sportshall is next to be painted.

The hostel has had new flooring laid at a hugely discounted price thanks to local lad John Rugg of KSE Flooring. The Gym floor needs re-surfacing as the current flooring is slippery and becoming increasingly dangerous. I would recommend keeping John in mind for future work

ASDA have agreed to fund the roofing repairs to the cost of £20,000. This is half the funds we applied for, but will enable the critical areas to be repaired in the Spring. Mersey roofing are signed up to deliver the work.

We have finally commissioned the work for improving our IT and AV systems. This will see the infrastructure updated with improvement on speed and reliability, tablets and laptops for staff use and an AV system that will enable us to run streams of video, photo and text information on at least 2 TV screens. It is hoped that members can treat this as a journalism option and create their own material and research and upload quality and relevant educational and engaging material that it is useful and fun. The work should be complete by mid – February and is funded by a grant.

Junior club

Junior club is going very well at present we average around 25-40 young people per night from 7 different schools, although our main intake is children who come on the walking bus from Faith primary. A couple of recent junior club highlights include the Nativity play in St. Peters church and the junior club Christmas party. Big thank you to all at All saints parish in Southport for their continued support and kind donations of presents for the grotto. We have a junior club trip to Shrewsbury school to look forward to in April and as you can imagine the children are really looking forward to this. Over the festive period I received an invitation from Liverpool football club to bring some of our junior members to the FA Cup game vs Everton and the 7 young people who attended were given the whole VIP treatment with a personal chef at their disposal. A fantastic experience and a memorable day for all, besides the result !!

Senior club

Senior club numbers are very good: we have over 100 registered members and are averaging 30+ young people per night. We are still managing to attract young people from all over the city in addition to our core of local members.

The Inbetweenagers club has been a success with 25 new members since November; it will be this group who will be working towards the next causeway exchange programme in April.

We have had some thoughts about creating some “Girls only” space. I would be interested in discussing this matter

Sports alive have recently started coming into senior club providing multi sports sessions and we are hoping to get them back into juniors in the near future

Members seem really very excited about their own idea of a Sponsored social media silence. We are actively planning towards a weekend away to deliver this and hopefully record the results.

Links with other agencies and future plans

I will be attending a conference in Kakkola Finland from 8-10 February to confirm our membership to the European Network of Youth Clubs, where I will be doing a presentation on our work at the Shewsy.

We continue to build on our relationship with “Talk about Youth” project in Dublin and Saltney youth council in Wales and will be taking part in a tri lateral youth exchange programme in April, June and October.

Ryan Fitzpatrick has agreed to take part in this years’ Medic Malawi expedition along with 3 senior girls.

I will table the club’s Spring programme on Monday

We are planning towards an entry into the national FA People’s Cup 5 x side football competition

We are hoping to receive a 2nd table tennis table as a donation from an ex club member

We are beginning our thinking and planning towards our annual Summer fair on 23rd June and maybe expanding its scope and ambition

John’s blog 3: Valuable people….and questions

The other night I bumped into Adrian Struve (ran the club in c 1962 and was preaching at the Abbey in Shrewsbury last Sunday (and just turned 92), George and Pat Cotterell (ex members) and Peter Brennan (team leader c 1988 – 2001) at the Lost Tribes of Everton play which was a three night sell out!  All strong supporters of the club. We need everyone on board. These folk are Angels…join the club. Will you ?

Talking of which, big thanks to Alastair Ross (hostel c 1978) and Neville Black (staff c 1964 – 1968). We have got a bit sharper in asking for support from our ex hostel tribe. And the wonderful Mike Hodges ( hostel c 1978) is first up with a reply. Love ya Mike. I’ll say this now. I believe Questions and the asking of them, tells one a huge amount about the person in front of you and Mike Hodges is the best example of that skill that I have ever encountered. So what the applied skill does is this – it shows:

  • Interest and respect as a listener
  • Clarity that you don’t know and would like to know
  • Humility and an appetite to learn

I write this with Bob Dylan playing in the background…lovely…except it isn’t really Bob… ( I can decipher every word!) it’s John O Connell, (ex club member c 1974 – 1978) on his latest CD playing Dylan songs. John is a wonderfully accomplished professional musician, pre- eminent and massively respected on the Liverpool scene and in good touch with the club. I like to think (and I could ask him  this)… that the Shewsy was a big help in getting him to where he is. As I listen to “Forever Young”, not only do I want to sign him up for playing at my funeral…. But these words fit so well as a sign off:

May God bless and keep you always, May your wishes all come true

May you always do for others, And let others do for you

May you build a ladder to the stars, And climb on every rung

May you grow up to be righteous, May you grow up to be true.

May you always know the truth, And see the lights surrounding you

May you always be courageous, Stand upright and be strong

May your hands always be busy, May your feet always be swift

May you have a strong foundation, When the winds of changes shift

May your heart always be joyful, And may your song always be sung

May you stay forever young, Forever young, forever young,

May you stay forever young

Bob Dylan

John Hutch