Category: News

Newry Centenary Celebrations

What a fabulous night in the fantastic Canal Court Hotel & Spa celebrating 100 years of Newry.

We would like to thank everyone who attended and helped make the night a great success, with special thanks to our compère Jackie Fullerton & Special Guest Stephen Kenny who both thoroughly entertained the crowd.

Our thanks also goes to the Mid Ulster Football League/ Association, NI Football League& O’Neills Sportswear all of whom presented us with gifts to mark our centenary, which are greatly appreciated.

The craic was flowing among invited guests, sponsors, ex & present players/management, volunteers & supporters while the music by Friends topped off the night.

Here’s to another 100 years of Newry ⚽️💙

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Blast from the Past: 1972 AGM Report

AGM Report Culled From Newry Reporter dated 4th May,1972
Town’s 1972 AGM was “Bright, Breezy, And Constructive” 
“Considering the serious civic disorders in our midst throughout the season and our own poor results on the field of play, it was in my opinion a tremendous feat to incur such a small loss of  £7.27 during the past season”, stated Jim Campbell, Newry Town’s Hon Treasurer at the club’s annual meeting which was held on Monday night.
There was quite a good attendance of members despite the fact that there were many other sporting attractions held throughout the district that night and the meeting itself was informative and constructive.
 
Michael McKevitt

Look Forward Now With Confidence – Chairman 

Mr Michael McKevitt, Chairman who presided, welcomed the attendance and said that getting over a very difficult period in the Club’s history they could now look with great confidence to the future as there was a great abundance of talent in the locality. He thanked his energetic Committee for giving him their magnificent support during the time he was in the Chair.
Luck Deserted The Team On Many Occasions 
Mr William McVicker, the Hon Secretary in his report dwelt mainly on the playing performances of the team during the season. He said that on many occasions luck had completely deserted the side and in many games they had just failed by the odd goal.
Their poor performances however in the cup competitions was a bad blow to the club. He thanked the players for their great loyalty during the season in which upwards of 40 games had been played.
Treasurer’s Report 
“It took £1,272.87 to run the club during the season”, stated Jim Campbell in his Treasurers Report. “We had a net working loss over the period of £7.27. Deficiency of Capital with the Bank on the 22nd March of this year was £199.40. The Management Committee had succeeded in slashing expenses in many ways during the season but perhaps there could be further economies in such items as laundry and fuel/ light.”
He drew the members attention to the fact that approximately 25% of the total expenditure on the balance sheet presented belonged to debts accrued from previous seasons which included the upkeep of Ground, players outfit, printing and fuel/light.
The cost of operating the 2nd Eleven in The Mid Ulster League was also included in the expenditure sheet . The improved financial state of the club was made possible thanks to another generous and substantial contribution from The Newry Town FC Supporters Club which coming as it did after the 31 st March was too late to be included in the current balance sheet. The most notable achievement on the income side of the Balance Sheet came from the Supporters Club and The Treasurer thanked John Grant and Jim Weir most sincerely for their magnificent work and leadership in the fundraising efforts of the Supporters Club.
He also thought it right and proper to record that the great majority of the Club Management Committee had stood solidly behind Newry Town FC throughout the season and also had played a big part in the fundraising efforts of the Supporters Club.
It is now apparent that the finances of Newry Town FC are in much better shape than they were a year ago but it will take a lot more hard work and sheer dedication to put the club back where it belongs in the top flight. The Treasurer added this was not however an impossible task and in his opinion their Salvation in the future regarding a safe guaranteed financial income depends entirely on the success or failure of The Social Cub Project at The Showgrounds. This project has an estimated cost of £ 8,000 and if it succeeds then Newry Town FC can march forward with a new confidence which could be rewarded with Irish Senior League and European Football. If it fails, he said, they must be realistic and conclude that Newry Town FC was doomed, certainly as far as big time football was concerned. Therefore it was imperative that more and more football minded people in Newry should come forward to help The Social Club Project.
Newry Town FC as a football club belongs to all the local people – It is their club, they should not be content to stay out and criticise but they should be prepared to come in and help to shape it’s future, a future that could reap the rich rewards mentioned and fully utilise the wonderful facilities existing at The Showgrounds.
Election of Officers and Committee
The Election of Officers and Committee resulted as under:
President – Mr F Whitcroft
Chairman – Mr M McKevitt
Vice Chairman – Mr J Weir
Secretary – Mr Wm McVicker
Treasurer – Mr J Campbell
Committee – Messrs R Holmes, S Campbell, H Poyntz, W Murphy, N McCullough, F Harrison, H McAlpine, R Johnston and M Turley
TRIBUTE 
Before the meeting got underway, the Secretary referred to the passing of Mr Billy Heather who had been a great friend of local football down through the years and most particularly of Newry Town FC.
A short silence was observed in memory of the late Mr Heather.
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Blast from the Past: Remembering Robert ‘Bud’ Hamilton

By Jim Campbell

Robert Hamilton was a local lad who was rated by many neutral observers to be the best full-back in Ireland when playing for Newry Town FC.

Robert or ‘Bud’ as he was affectionally known by many of his friends, first came into prominence when playing for Damolly Rovers during the 1924-25 season.

The Town’s local scout quickly recognised the young defender’s ability and persuaded him to sign up for The Marshes club towards the end of that season.

Newry’s management decided that it would help Robert’s development if he was loaned out to Portadown Reserves, whilst still remaining a signed senior league player with the Frontiermen.

Robert Hamilton

After six months or so ‘Bud’ was back in harness with The Town and at the beginning of the 1926-27 season he signed professional forms becoming an automatic choice at left full-back in the senior side.

His form in the early part of that season was absolutely magnificent and helped to catapult The Town into a top six Irish Senior League spot.

Interesting to note that Robert’s younger brother David, was also, by this time, an automatic choice at centre half in Newry’s very solid rearguard.

After a run of outstanding games in the senior league, 20 year old Robert was selected to play for The Irish League Representative Team against The Free State League at Windsor Park on Saturday 5th March 1927.

The game attracted a massive crowd in excess of 15,000 plus a host of cross channel scouts. Hamilton had a fine game, attracting the attention of Liverpool, Hearts and Glasgow Rangers. Rangers won the race for his signature but they had to increase their original offer to keep him away from Hearts or Liverpool.

The Town completed his transfer to Rangers on Thursday 10th March 1927 for an undisclosed fee and ‘Bud’ made his debut for the Glasgow club on Wednesday 16th March 1927 against Greenock Morton.

The Ireland’s Saturday Night newspaper commenting on Hamilton’s transfer to Glasgow Rangers said “Hamilton’s future is now in his own hands. He has the ball at his feet as it were and with him alone depends how high up the ladder of football fame he will climb. He has gone over to one of the best managed clubs in the land, a club that is known to give youngsters every opportunity to make good. He has everything on his side to make good. Youth, Height and Weight are assets which combined with ability should make any player feel comfortable in the best company.”

Very quickly Robert settled in at Ibrox Park and just as he was at Newry he became an automatic choice at left back in a great Rangers team that was sweeping all before it in Scotland.

In 1928 he was a member of the first Rangers team to tour America and also was a member of their 1929-30 clean sweep team winning the League Championship, Scottish Cup, Glasgow Cup and Glasgow Charity Cup. ‘Bud’ played in a further three Scottish Cup Finals ( Winning Two) and claimed three more Championship and Charity Cup Winners Medals.

Whilst at Rangers he added five full Irish International caps to the Inter League honour he had won at Newry.

Hamilton left Rangers in 1933 to sign for English Div 2 Club, Bradford City FC where he spent two seasons. He then moved North of The Border again to join Third Lanark and later went to Morton as his trophy-laden career came to a close.

After Robert signed for the Ibrox club in 1927 his younger Brother David continued to play for The Town in the Irish League but David’s career in football was halted when he emigrated to Canada.

Another of Robert’s brothers, Sammy ran two successful businesses on the Belfast Road in Newry for a number of years, namely Rockfoot Service Station and Rockfoot Carpets.

Married to a Welsh Lady, ‘Bud’ passed away in Cardiff on the 7th Feb 1964.

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Centenary Year Legends Match

We are delighted to announce that as part of our Centenary Year celebrations we will be hosting a
Newry City Legends & Guests vs Evos Legends Match on Saturday 16th November KO 5pm at The Showgrounds. £5 / £3 concession.

Our centenary jersey (as modelled by Mark Hughes) will be available to pre-order from tomorrow night at the club shop v Portadown. Tickets for the Centenary evening in the Canal Court with special guest Stephen Kenny also on sale.

What a fantastic opportunity to see Newry lteam Managed by Robbie Casey and legends such as Ray Byrne & Mickey Keenan back in a Newry jersey once again!! 🔵⚪️

Photograph Courtesy of Brendan Monaghan Photography

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Foley NIFWA Championship Player of the Month

Delighted to share the news that Adam Foley has been rewarded for some scintillating performances with the NI Football Writers Bluefin Sport Championship Player of the Month. Newry Manager Darren Mullen commented “This accolade is just reward for some excellent performances by Adam in October. He’s a player with undoubted ability who just needs to perform consistently and thankfully he has shown that recently. Our style of play suits him and he has been thriving in a new role so hopefully that continues for the remainder of the season. He’s a great lad who has fitted in well at the club and will be the first to acknowledge the work of his teammates in helping him receive this award.”

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