A Pictorial History



Steve Marsh & Stuart Allen

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1924-25 Friendlies

CORINTHIANS : Fund Raiser for Mansfield House University Supplement

Upton Park

4 - 2 (Jennings 2, Lewis, Yews)

27 November 1924

CHELMSFORD : Opening of Ground

New Writtle Street

2 - 1 (Barrett 2)

7 February 1925


Upton Park

2 - 0

20 April 1925

SLUG Programme

Other Matches Played at the Boleyn Ground


Upton Park

? - ?

16 April 1925

WEST HAM BOYS v. WILLESDEN BOYS : Corinthian Shield (Final)

Upton Park

? - ?

11 April 1925

25_04_11 WHU v. Willesden

Image courtesy of Nigel Turner

SLUG Programme

West Ham United Club Tour in Holland 1925

Recorded by Mr FRANK R. PRATT  (Director)

It was a merry party that dined together in the evening, when Mr. J. Oudheusden made a nice speech, complimenting both teams on the way they had "played the game."  Mr. George Davis for West Ham, and Mr. J. W. Gilbert for Derby, suitably replied, and souvenirs were presented by both clubs to Mr. and Mrs. Oudheusden as a small mark of appreciation of their efforts in giving us a right royal time.




The morning of departure. Quite a number of friends came to see us off by the 9 a.m. train from Amsterdam. On the same platform was a courting couple whose antics greatly amused our boys who sang little ditties suitable for the occasion. We stopped at Rosendaal Station where a rush was made for refreshments and then hitched on to a train that had just come in from Germany, and com¬pleted our trip to Flushing. After another fine sea passage we arrived at Folkstone, then entrained for dear old London Town, reaching there at 9.30 p.m.

It was agreed by everybody that this had been the finest tour the club had done. The Dutch people were most hospitable and we carried back with us very happy recollections of our first visit to Holland.

Our special thanks arc due to Mr. and Mrs. Jan Oudheusden. The former (whose special weakness is for cheese and pancakes) devotes a great deal of time to sport in general, but football in particular as is well known throughout Holland. Mrs. Oudheusden is also a very keen sportswoman and in the absence of her husband acts as the Fairy Godmother to the visitors. We were also greatly indebted to Mr. Jack Reynolds who was with us practically the whole time, acting as interpreter and generally making things easy for us.

Wednesday 13th May

It was a merry party that left Victoria on May 13th by the 9.15 a.m. train for Amsterdam via Folkestone and Flushing, consisting of Messrs. W. J. Cearns, G. F. Davis, E. S. King, Frank Pratt, E. Hufton, W. Henderson, T. Hodgson, J. Collins, G. Kay, G. Eastman, J. Barrett, T. Yews, W. Edwards, V. Watson, W. Moore, J. Ruffell, A. Fletcher, J. Campbell and Frank Piercy. Messrs. A. Searles and T. Williamson also did the journey but stayed one night only. Charlie Paynter, together with Dick Leafe, came to see his boys safely away and to give them a final word of advice. The steamer left Folkestone in due course and after a splendid sea passage arrived at Flushing soon after 5 p.m., where we proceeded to alter our watches to the Dutch time by putting them back 40 minutes. We boarded the train for the four-hour run to Amsterdam. Passing through the country I noticed, as last year, that some of the cows still wore overcoats, and although not absolutely certain, believe I saw one wearing a pair of Oxford trousers. Mind you, I would not swear to it, but from a distance it looked very much like it. We arrived at Amsterdam at 10 p.m. and were met by Mr. and Mrs, Oudheusden and Mr, Reynolds (of whom I shall speak, later). On the way to our hotel we noticed flags were flying in all directions, and at first thought it was in honour of our visit, but were told that Queen Wilhelmina had arrived the day before to take up residence at the Royal Palace for one week, which I understand is compulsory under the Constitution of the State. We eventually reached the Hotel "Suisse" which was to be the headquarters during our stay.

Hotel Suisse Amsterdam


After a welcome night's rest, although somewhat disturbed by the chimes of the public clocks, which, at the hour, play a complete tune in harmony lasting about one and a-half minutes, and pro rata for each quarter, we sat down at 9 a.m. to an English breakfast, which is always a stipulation on these Continental tours. The rest of the day was spent in taking our bearings and at 5.30 we left the hotel in a char-a-banc for the Ajax F.C. ground to play our first match which resulted in a win for us by 2-0, both goals being scored by V. Watson. Before the game we were introduced to Mr. A. Koolhass, Assistant Secretary, and Mr. T. Schrievaart, President of the Ajax Club. There were 10,000 people present who were highly delighted with the match, and the officials and players congratulated our boys on their very fine and clean exhibition of football. The Ajax Club played very good football and were for three consecutive years champions of the Netherlands.

Hotel Suisse

AJAX AMSTERDAM (Netherlands)

Het Houten Stadion

2 - 0 (Watson)

14 May 1925

For the past ten years their trainer has been Jack Reynolds, one of the best of fellows, who last played for Gillingham, and who met our boys in opposition in the Southern League days.

Dr. Michele from Italy, who witnessed this game, was so pleased with the exhibition, that he commenced negotiations for a tour in that country next season, saying that our style of good clean football would please his people.


Glorious weather prevailed and after breakfast we hoarded a steam launch for a round trip through the canals which proved most interesting. We came out into the river Y and went all round the docks. Some idea of the growth of the port can be gauged from the fact that in 1877 the number of vessels dealt with was 1533 with a tonnage of 850,000 and in 1923 the figures were 3,041 vessels with a tonnage of 6,000,000.

The afternoon was spent in a trip on the river Anistel to a place called Kalfje. After refreshing ourselves, we adjourned to the grounds of the Cafe where there was a giant-stride, swings, see-saw, etc. Other visitors who were also there on pleasure bent, joined in the fun with our boys, and the stunts on the sec-saw especially were very interesting. In fact, to a great many of us who were lucky enough to look on, it was very-very-er-interesting. It was on this very spot that one of our boys was christened "Knight of the Garter."


The Derby County team was due to arrive at 9 a.m., having crossed to the Hook by the night boat. Mr. Sid. King went to meet them at the station, but was informed that owing to a dense fog at Harwich, the boat was four hours late in sailing. However, they arrived in time for lunch, both teams with the officials dining together, the total number of the party now being forty.

After lunch we were taken on a boat trip to Zaandam, where we visited the house of Czar Peter of Russia, who, in order to study the customs stayed in other countries and worked among their people as an ordinary journeyman. The house, which was built in 1632 was given over in 1818 by King William of the Netherlands and is now completely enclosed by an outer building which was presented by Czar Alexander III of Russia in 1896. The return journey was made without mishap by the "Forty Thieves," and after dinner, the evening was spent in trying to find the Cafe that sold the best coffee (?).

Peter  the Great

Tsar Peter I of Russia is more usually described as 'Peter the Great'. As a young man, he travelled to Europe in 1697–98 to study new developments in technology, especially shipbuilding. He lived in Deptford, at the home of the writer John Evelyn, for much of his four-month stay in England.


Although officially meant to be travelling incognito, most people seemed to know Peter's identity. At a height of six feet seven, it would have been hard for him to blend into a crowd!


Up with the lark (of course it is not the same one that we get here) for a 7.30 breakfast in order to catch the 8.30 train for Arnhem, the venue of our second match versus Vitesse F.C. We arrived after a two hours' run, passing through Erle, the Salisbury Plain of Holland, and were met at the station by the officials of the club, amongst whom were Mr. Holtus, Chairman; Mr. Keppel-Hesslink, Secretary; and Baron Van Pallandt, all most charming people who had laid themselves out to give us a hearty welcome, this being the first visit of a Professional Club. And I must say right here that they accomplished what they set out to do. The trainer here proved to be our old friend, Jefferson, who with Harold Fleming played many a brilliant game for Swindon against us in the Southern League days. Needless to say the pleasure of meeting again was mutual. On arrival, we were escorted to what we might call a Publicity Office and entertained to refreshments. Lined up outside were 14 motor cars bedecked with flags waiting to take us a 40 mile drive through the prettiest part of Holland. On leaving the building, the Bioscope man was very busy taking pictures, and we eventually started on our drive which proved delightful. We lunched at a place called Velp, where a good sized crowd had congregated to watch the fun and after more photographs had been taken, we set out for the ground which was situated in a very pretty spot. The heat was tremendous. Our boys were the first to take the field and immediately the band struck up God Save The King, whilst the Dutch National Anthem was played when Vitesse turned out. The game was played in a fine sporting spirit, and although we lost 3-2, Campbell scoring both goals, we really should have won by a big margin. One special thing worthy of mention was a great shot by Barrett, which hit a clock in the centre of an advertisement board behind the goal, with disastrous results to the said clock.

VITESSE (Netherlands)


2 - 3 (Campbell)

17 May 1925

There was also one thing that tickled me. During the match I happened to be sitting next to a rather high personage, who was explaining to me that he passed us during our drive in the morning. I said, "Oh yes! You saw us in the Forest." He replied, "Ja, Ja, I saw you tomorrow." Both Clubs afterwards dined together at the Hotel Royal and in this case the orchestra played the National Anthem of both countries, all of us joining in, and we la-la'd the words we didn't know.

Speeches were made and complimentary things were said about West Ham, and Mr. George Davis made a very fine speech in response. We arrived back at our hotel about 1 a.m. feeling satisfied that we had again created a good impression on the new friends we had made.


We were still having splendid weather and after breakfast both teams were taken a day trip, the first place being the Island of Marken. This place is typically Dutch and the dress of the women folk very picturesque. It boasts one policeman, who by the way happened to know London rather well. A good deal of fun was created at the only "Stores" which was a wooden hut, where souvenirs could be obtained. I would like to mention here that the girls up to 16 years of age, wear their hair long with a cork-screw curl either side of the face. It is then cut short with the exception of the two curls, which they carry through life. (Although not certain I believe the reason for this is to enable the husband to hang on to something when the wife becomes too contrary). Coming back to the main-land, we next visited Volendam, another very quaint place where all the females have their hair bobbed. One thing that struck me as being comical (I don't mean the tomato that Henderson threw), in some cases was the cut of the men's trousers. You know what the Oxford bags are like! Well, they were like that only more so, in fact they were really divided skirts. Very handy for hiding their young in time of danger.

After lunch, we set out for Edam, noted for cheese making. (You will notice a lot of dams in the story, but please excuse them). The journey was made by canal, in a kind of small barge, the motive power being a ''young" fellow of 70 years of age, who, with a tow rope round his shoulders plodded the two mile journey in great style, being encouraged by remarks from his human freight. At the end of the journey a silver collection was made in order to "oil the works." On the way we passed many duck farms and there seemed to be thousands of ducks. (I didn't count them, but I particularly noticed one young one walking along the tow path). After a splendid day's outing, we arrived back at the hotel for dinner.




The morning was spent in visiting the Asscher Diamond Factory, which proved very interesting. The officials were very courteous and showed us round in small parties explaining the different processes of cutting and polishing. After lunch many of us went to the Stadium and indulged in cricket practice, in view of the forthcoming test match, England versus Holland. The evening was spent at the Krasnapolsky Dance Hall, all the boys having a real good time.




We paid a visit to the Ryks Museum, a splendid building of its kind erected in 1847, containing a very fine collection of Rembrandt pictures.

In the afternoon, we were taken to the International Flower Show at Heemstede, stopping at Haarlem, one of the oldest towns of the Netherlands, and is well known from the 80 years' war. In 1572-1573, it was besieged by the Spaniards, but after a seven months siege it had to yield. When the Spaniards had been driven out again there came a period of unknown prosperity. Early spring finds the extensive bulb fields covered with hyacinths, tulips and daffodils making a wonderful impression in the pro¬fusion and variety of their colours. Small wonder then that thousands, amongst whom are many foreigners, go to see them. The season was too far advanced to enable us to see the full beauty, only here and there being patches of gorgeous colour.


Breakfast at 8.30, then off to Rotterdam for the third match versus The Swallows, We were met on arrival by Mr. H. Welling, Treasurer of the Swallows, and Mr. J. M. Weber, Chairman of the Feyenoord Club, upon whose ground the match was being played. A tug had been engaged for a trip round the docks, which are very extensive, covering an area of 534 acres and having a quay frontage of over 10 miles. There was a fleet of 10 cars to take us after lunch to the "scene of action" where we arrived about 2 p.m. to find a huge crowd waiting. The Swallows players are drawn from others clubs, and in this match seven Dutch Internationals turned out.

SWALLOWS (Netherlands)


1 - 1 (Watson)

21 May 1925

The match, which was attended by the Burgomaster of Rotterdam, was played in a line spirit by both teams, and some really good football was seen. The result was a draw one all, Watson scoring; while the Swallows' goal was obtained from a penalty given against Barrett for a "splendid catch" on the goal line. As in the case of the match at Arnhem, the National Anthems of both countries was played by the band, as each team took the field. Dinner was taken at the Pschor Hotel to which was attached a splendid dance hall where the rest of the evening was spent, leaving very late, but very happy.




A visit to the Royal Palace had been arranged for the morning, but for some reason it did not mature, we there¬fore whiled away the lime in our own sweet way.

In the afternoon, we should have gone to Zandvoort-on-Sea, but missed the train by a minute. Here we had another example of putting the cart before the horse, the ticket collector informing Albert Fletcher that "You vos vim minute too quick too late."

The evening was spent at the Tuschinsky Theatre, varieties and pictures. Of course we had not thoroughly mastered the language in so short a time to know exactly what the comedian was singing or talking about. However we joined in the laughter when we thought the right moment, but unfortunately some of the party did so when they should have been serious. Also, in one scene of a picture, depicting the husband pacing the corridor of an hotel, and the wife, unknown to him in a room with her lover. Just as the husband gets outside of the door and the wife is about to leave the room, one of the party screamed out "Go back, go back," which caused some merriment. Altogether it was a most enjoyable evening.




Again we had the morning to ourselves, and after lunch, set out for the cricket ground for the England v. Holland match. Our team was the following- F. R. Pratt (Director), G. Eastman, J. Barrett, W. Edwards, T, Yews, J. Campbell, representing West Ham, and J. W. Gilbert (Director), C. Potter (Manager), S. Murphy, H. Toms, E. Bromwich, and B. Underwood, representing Derby County.

England batted first scoring 145, Edwards, 42; Barrett, 22; Murphy, 17; were top scorers.

Mr. Oudheusden bowled finely capturing 8 wickets. Two of the Dutch wickets were down for 10, both falling to S. Murphy, when a storm broke over the ground and spoiled what would probably have been an interesting match. We were invited in the evening to the Annual Soiree of the "Incasso-Bank," and after a very fine musical programme, dancing was indulged in until the early hours.


An early lunch and then both Derby County and our boys set out in char-a-bancs for the Ajax ground to play an exhibition match, this of course being the first time the clubs had met since meeting in the semi-final of the FA Cup in 1923, in a game which we won 5-2, and will live long in the memory of those who were fortunate enough to see it.

The winning club in the match under notice was to receive a Silver Windmill and the players smaller ones. The losing club, which unfortunately proved to be our boys, also received a similar trophy.

Quite a big crowd was present when the teams took the field both getting a good reception. It was a splendid game to watch, and some sparkling football was seen, but I say without hesitation that West Ham was decidedly unlucky to lose by 3-2, Watson and Ruffell (penalty) scoring. The game was fought in a fine spirit by both sides, which highly pleased the spectators.

DERBY COUNTY : Exhibition match

Het Houten Stadion

2 - 3 (Watson, Ruffell [pen])

24 May 1925

24_11_27 WHU v. Corinthians

NORWICH CITY : Norfolk & Norwich Hospital Cup

The Nest

1 - 6 (Earle)

30 April 1925

Hufton, Henderson, Horler, Bishop, Eastman, Cadwell, Yews, Earle, Watson, Moore, Ruffell

MILLWALL : London Professional Charity Cup

Upton Park

3 - 1 (Watson 2, Moore)

13 October 1924








Lewis TH. (Ilford)




Hufton, Hodgson, Henderson, Collins, Eastman, Barrett, Edwards, Watson, Campbell, Fletcher, Yews


Hufton, Henderson, Young, Collins, Kay, Barrett, Yews, Moore, Watson, Fletcher, Ruffell

Hufton, Hodgson, Henderson, Collins, Kay, Barrett, Yews, Moore, Watson, Fletcher, Ruffell


Hufton, Hodgson, Eastman, Collins, Kay, Barrett, Edwards, Moore, Campbell, Fletcher, Ruffell

Season 1924-25 1923-24 Friendlies 1925-26 Friendlies


Vicarage Field

3 - 2

23 April 1925

WHU v. Corinthians 25_02_07 Chelmsford v. WHU Opening of Lights

Image courtesy of John Northcutt

SWINDON TOWN : Bert Denyer Benefit


3 - 0

15 September 1924


Upton Park

4 - 3

18 September 1924



2 - 0

25 September 1924



2 - 2

16 October 1924



3 - 2

22 October 1924

BOSCOMBE : Reserves


1 - 2

3 January 1925



6 - 0

18 February 1925


Upton Park

10 - 1

26 February 1925

BRISTOL : Docklands Settlement


? - ?

27 April 1925

WEST HAM BOYS v. EAST HAM BOYS : Corinthian Shield (Third Round)

Upton Park

3 - 1 (West Ham: Inns 2, Pickless) (East Ham: Chapman)

17 january 1925