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York City Testimonial Games and Benefits

Traditionally testimonial games were awarded to players who had played for 10 years for one club. They were also awarded to some other long serving personnel or to players whose careers were ended by injury.

In former days, with a maximum wage, a testimonial game often allowed a player to buy his first house or to set him up in a post football career.

Until about the 1950s, there were occasions when City’s directors awarded a benefit cheque, it appeared to be a Football League directive for any player completing 5 consecutive years with a club, City were paying £350 in 1954, the equivalent of about one year's wages. Pre WW2, Raich Carter received a £500 benefit cheque from Sunderland. In one case, City paid a benefit cheque to their groundsman.

City have a long history in awarding players (and staff) testimonials. By the 1970s and Barry Swallow, the traditional testimonial game was becoming a testimonial season with the testimonial match being the highlight of season long series actvities which invariably included dinners, golf days, smaller events and glossy testimonial brochures.

Below are details of many testimonials featuring City players and City staff, including some awarded by other clubs to people with City connections.

Football's authorities have to sanction all testimonials and would occasionally sanction a second testimonial for a player, such as Peter Lorimer who enjoyed testimonial's organised by Leeds either side of his spell with City.

NB You'll note an almost complete lack of testimonials where York City have provided the opposition, City's trip to Scarborough for Harry Dunn's testimonial being an exception.

Name

Date

Opponents (Game)

Notes

Jack Middlemiss

End 28/9 season

Middlesbrough

1st ever YCFC benefit. Receipts were £111

Tom Fenoughty

1934

Stan Fox End 37/8 season Pickering (a) Also awarded proceeds of league game v Southport (7/5/38)
Ted Wass 1939 Newcastle (May 1939)
Sam Gledhill

42/3 (1943)

Also a 1949 testimonial

Ted Hathaway

42/3

Jack Pinder

01/05/46

Huddersfield

Also a spring 1938 testimonial v Grimsby

T Ledgard

Sept 48

Former groundsman, suffering from blindness granted a benefit match and a year’s pay

Bert Brenen

30/03/51

City XI v Leeds L0-4

Attendance around 11,000 (9,056 pay £629 on the night plus around 2,000 advance sales meaning Brenen probably received the FA maximum allowed testimonial of £750). Couldn’t agree terms and joined Scarborough in August 1951

Tom Lockie

30/04/52

YCFC v Football League XI L1-6

Attendance 6,586

Alf & Matt Patrick

End 53/4

Planned joint benefit match against an "All Stars XI" called off a few days before the game as many of the stars were committed elsewhere. In 1953, each received benefit cheques (a standard practice at the time when a player completed 5 years' service with a club)

Alan Stewart, Sid Storey and Ron Spence 54/5 Each receive £500 benefit cheques (a standard practice at the time when a player completed 5 years' service with a club)

Gordon Brown

End 55/6

£500 benefit cheque

Percy Andrews

End 56/7

City 3 All Stars XI 0

7,000 crowd (£695 receipts) at benefit match plus £400 benefit cheque in June 1957

Matt Patrick

1958

Receive a second benefit cheque for a further 5 seasons service

Barry Jackson Aug 64 Receive £500 benefit cheque from Hugh Kitchin (See 640905 programme)
Joe Shaw

29/03/65

Sheffield United v All Star XI

Eric Brookes / Eric Winstanley (Joint)

27/11/67

Barnsley v Sheffield W

Gerry Baker 20/10/69 YCFC v Happy Wanderers 5 -5 In aid of Gerry Baker who had to retire following a knee injury. Numbered 12 page programme, similar in style to that of the league programmes but had a different cover (Gerry Baker photo) and a full page picture of the 1955 side. At the time, the normal programme contained no photos

Barry Jackson

23/02/70

YCFC v Hull

City win 3-2. Jackson was suspended so couldn’t play. Proceeds were £718 and 92.5p with some items, including donations and ticket money etc.” still to be included. Programme numbered in sequence with the other programmes of the season (Gerry Baker testimonial programme excepted)

Harry Dunn

02/09/74

Scarborough v YCFC

Long serving Scarborough player, the original and not Harry A Dunn, the 2017/8 City scout

Paul Aimson

18/11/75

Bury v All Stars XI (featuring George Best)

Barry Swallow

76/7

YCFC v All Star XI

Opponents largely Yorkshire based and lead by Billy Bremner, including Jack & Bobby Charlton, David Harvey, Terry Cooper, Eddie Gray, Mick Jones, Paul Reaney, Paul Madeley, Peter Lorimer, Alan Woodward, Kevin Hector, Alan Hinton, Cliff Calvert plus the former Bristol Rovers strike force of Warboys & Bannister. Special testimonial programme (20pp / 25p / A5) and was first full colour City programme

Peter Lorimer

09/11/77

Leeds v Select XI

First of 2 testimonial games

Denis Smith

16/04/80

Stoke 70s v Stoke 80s

Gordon Banks, Geoff Hurst and Peter Shilton amongst the Stoke legends to play,

Malcolm Crosby

17/05/82

Aldershot v WHU

YCFC player at time of testimonial

John Simpson

09/05/83

YCFC v Leeds

Ron Hillyard

15/05/84

Gillingham v WHU

Colin Addison

01/08/85

Hereford v Man United

Peter Lorimer

20/11/85

Leeds v Man United

Second of 2 testimonial games

Luther Blissett

16/08/88

Watford v Luton

Derek Hood

01/11/88

YCFC v Derek Hood Select XI

Featuring many of the 1984 YCFC D4 Championship winning side

David Longhurst

Dec 90

Corby v Kettering

Tribute match

Paul Stancliffe

90/1

Arranged by Sheffield United

Wilf McGuinness

1991

1991 testimonial dinner and 2001 LUFC Luncheon Club event jointly held in his and Jack (yes Jack) Charlton’s honour. No record of a testimonial game

Ian McDonald

07/05/92

Ian McDonald XI v Southampton

Arranged by Aldershot, played at Southampton

Roly Mills

Oct 92

Northampton v Leicester

Gary Mills’ father. He played in all 4 divisions for Northampton in the 1960s

Nigel Worthington

1993

Arranged by Sheffield Wednesday

Kevan Smith

1994

Darlington v Middlesbrough

Tony Canham

94/5

YCFC v Leeds

94/5 season long testimonial

Neville Southall

01/08/95

Everton v Celtic

Steve Tutill

16/07/97

YCFC v Middlesbrough (7,123 crowd)

450 people, including many 54/5 players, in Ebor Suite for dinner

Alan Little

29/07/98

YCFC v Middlesbrough (6,215 crowd)

Paul Gascoigne play for Middlesbrough. Only City manager to be awarded a testimonial

Andy McMillan

21/07/99

YCFC v Leeds

Warm up featured YCFC 70s (including Crawford, Swallow, Topping, Seal, Jones, Lyons and Butler), playing in 74/5 Y front shirts face Leeds United Old Boys (including Lorimer and John Charles)

Mike Stowell

30/07/2000

Wolves v Aston Villa

Wayne Hall

01/08/2000

YCFC 1 v Middlesbrough 2

Jackie McNamara

29/05/2005

Celtic v Rep of Ireland XI

Testimonal Programmes for sale

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