Pat Woods was a good full-back and a wonderful club servant for QPR FC. He played over 300 games for Rangers during the 1950’s and early 1960’s, nearly all at right-back and scored in excess of 14 goals in all competitions.
He was one of my Loftus Road heroes. In my early days of supporting the R’s, 1957-1961, the Woods/Ingham full-back partnership seemed forever, but alas nothing, no matter how solid, is eternal. “Splinter” as he was sometimes known amongst certain adult supporters of the day, had a fair turn of pace, a good tackle and when the opportunity arose, a blistering shot from distance. He really knew how to blast in a penalty.
I recall in my first ever away fixture at Watford on December 10th 1960, which Rangers won 3-0, Pat scored with a spot-kick which really made the old onion bag bulge !
At the end of the 1960-61 season, Pat made a domestic decision to emigrate to Australia and whilst there played for Hellenic FC. He later returned to these shores for a short spell in 1963 and played 36 games for Colchester United. One of these ironically enough was against QPR in an FA Cup tie at Layer Road.
The Woods Clan finally decided to reside permanently in Australia, but from snippets of news over subsequent years you could always tell that Queen’s Park Rangers Football Club always meant a lot to him.
Thanks for the memories Pat. R.I.P.
Bernard Lambert (“Kerrins”)
Pat Woods was born on 29th April 1933 in Islington, but then spent most of his time in Willesden before emigrating to Australia in 1961. On leaving school he joined the Loftus Road ground staff after being spotted playing at outside-right in a district schoolboy representative game.
He signed as an amateur in July 1948 before becoming a professional player in May 1950. Pat started off playing as an inside-forward, but because of his “sure kicking of the ball”, he was eventually tried at full-back and soon showed good promise in his new position.
Alan Barnes recalls seeing Pat from time to time in Beethoven Street, off of Kilburn Lane and when he first started going to the R’s the first six names in the programme line-up always seemed to be: Drinkwater, Woods, Ingham, Petchey, Rutter and Angell.
Pat made his 1st team debut at Coventry on the 3rd January 1953 and went on to make 333 1st team appearances for the R’s and netted 16 goals. When he eventually moved to Australia he joined Hellenic FC, but returned to England a few years later and played for Colchester United in the 1963-64 season.
There was a short article in the 1961-62 Club Handbook which refers to a letter that Pat Woods had written to Alec Stock: ‘Former Willesden schoolboy and stalwart of our defence over a great number of years, Pat Woods decided his future lay in the Commonwealth, and in the early spring sailed for Australia with his wife and two young sons. Pat’s decision was a blow for Q.P.R. for he obviously had many years of football in him and his departure left a big gap to be filled.
Pat wrote to Manager Alec Stock during the summer and likens the football there to “no more than Combination standard.” He went on to say: “You can tell what it’s like for I’ve actually scored goals with my head !” In Australia, Pat met up with former Rangers winger, Johnny Pattison and his family, who have been out there for a number of years.’
He returned to Australia and played for South Coast United and Melita Eagles. Aged 79, he sadly passed away on 14th August in Nambucca Heads, New South Wales. There was a minute’s applause for him and Alan McDonald at Loftus Road before the Swansea City game.
Patrick J Woods: 29th April 1933 – 14th August 2012.
Rest in Peace
(The above pic is from the 1949/50 Club Handbook and features the ‘Stars of Tomorrow’ – Glyn Davies, Michael Powell, Pat Woods and Brian Nicholas)