I’m still a huge fan of the Small Faces and. I first became aware that Stevie Marriott had performed at Loftus Road when a picture of him with ‘The Moments’ appeared in a fanzine some years ago. I do remember seeing a local band, ‘The Midnites’ play at Loftus Road later in the 60’s but unfortunately I had missed Steve Marriott. Then two years ago, Richard Maclennan scanned a similar image for me which he had seen in a book. I still didn’t even know which game it was until last month when Colin Woodley stumbled across the following note on the back of the Hibernian programme, a friendly played on 15th February 1964.He then scanned it for me and it reads as follows:-
‘Other new faces at Loftus Road are Steve Marriot and his moments. This is the first time we have had a beat group in action before a match and would like to wish Steve – who has appeared on several T.V. programmes – a swinging time.’ The lead guitarist was Johnny Weider who was from Shepherd’s Bush and the band had used a rehearsal room in a studio near his home.Weider had played with Johnny Kidd and the Pirates and later joined Eric Burdon before joining the progressive rock band, ‘Family’.
The friendly was arranged because the scheduled opponents, Barnsley were involved in a Cup tie as the programme notes explain:-
‘With scheduled opponents Barnsley still engaged in the FA Cup, we are happy to fill in the blank date this afternoon with a friendly match against famous Scottish First Division side Hibernian. We much appreciate the action of Hibs in stepping in at late notice for this game when it looked as if our supporters would have a ‘soccerless Saturday’. They have kindly agreed to take only the minimum costs just to cover their bare expenses.’
The visitors’ team changes have been noted in the programme so I’m taking it that the R’s line-up was as shown: Smith, Pat Brady, Angell, Malcolm, Ray Brady, Keen, McQuade, Bedford, Leary, Graham and McLeod. Many years later, Terry McQuade was to open a football-themed restaurant in the Haymarket with another ex-R’s player, Bobby Keetch. Stuart Leary was born in South Africa and also played County cricket for Kent. Tragically his body was found on Table Mountain in 1988.
The Hibernian team included Ronnie Simpson in goal who was nearly 34 at the time. He had won two FA Cup medals with Newcastle and was transferred to Celtic in 1965. He was one of the ‘Lisbon Lions’ who defeated Inter Milan 2-1 in the1967 European Cup Final. At left back was John Parke who arrived from Linfield and had made his debut for Northern Ireland in the 2-1 victory over Scotland in November 1963. The rest of the side were as follows: Fraser, Leishman, Cameron, Stanton, Grant, O’Rourke, Vincent, Martin and Stevenson. Rangers were having a poor season but easily won this encounter 5-1 with two goals apiece from Brian Bedford and Malcolm Graham and one from Terry McQuade.
However, the Youth team were having a good season and had reached the 4th Round of the FA Youth Cup following a magnificent 2-1 victory at White Hart Lane after extra time and how prophetic these programme notes were to be: ‘We make no apologies for mentioning the outstanding performance of our juniors yet again in the programme. A good Youth side today often results in an efficient first team of tomorrow and we believe we have a good Youth side at ‘Loftus Road.’ There is also reference to a new chant started at Tottenham but doesn’t actually say what it was ? Peter Springett had been selected to go on the England Youth team tour of Spain and the Canary Islands.
In the Boardroom, it was announced that George Wodehouse had retired as Chairman but remained on the Board and was replaced by Bernard ‘Call Me Bert’ Baker: ‘Mr Baker, introduced to the Rangers by his brother when he was eight years old, will certainly have the reputation as one of the most active club Chairman in the Football League. He never misses a chance to watch a game of football whether first team, combination or junior matches. He was one of the pioneers of the use of floodlights, being a member of the committee which first investigated the possibilities of floodlit football in this country. Later he helped establish the Southern Junior Floodlight Cup – the first competition to be held under lights.’
Once again, thanks to Colin Woodley and Richard Maclennan for all their help. I tried to contact Monitor Press for permission to use the Steve Marriott image but without any success. Should a copyright problem arise then please email me at: email@example.com