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Saturday 19th April 1947 - Loakes Park
WYCOMBE WANDERERS versus CORINTHIAN CASUALS
An historic occasion in the history of Wycombe Wanderers
took place in 1947 when Loakes Park was given to the Club as a gift by
former player Frank Adams. He had negotiated with Lord Carrington for the freehold on Loakes Park a couple of years earlier. The deeds were formally
presented the Club on 19th April 1947 prior to an Isthmian League match
against Corinthian Casuals. In his speech to the crowd, Frank Adams said
"If future generations obtain the same enjoyment out of Loakes
Park as it has given me in the past, then this gift will have been worthwhile".
A celebration dinner was held on the Monday after the match which was reported as follows in the Bucks Free Press.
“We aim to make it one of the finest amateur grounds in the country” declared Mr CP Vine, president of Wycombe Wanderers Football Club, at a dinner ay High Wycombe Town Hall on Monday to commemorate the presentation of Loakes Park to the club by Mr Frank Adams who captained the Wycombe team from 1913 until 1928.
Proposing the health of Mr Adams, Mr Vine said the presentation at Loakes Park on Saturday had marked the realisation of a dream the club had for many years. “But although this gift has been made to the club, it can be looked upon indirectly as a gift to the whole town” he said. “Week after week thousands of the people of the town find their chief relaxation at Loakes Park”
Mr Vine said the gift of Loakes Park placed on the club a responsibility to ensure not only that the heritage was handed down to posterity unimpaired but also that it was enhanced and improved.
Mr Adams declared “Wycombe Wanderers has been part of my life – and I have enjoyed every minute of it”. Mr Adams said he would like the use of the ground given as far as possible to some of the junior players in the district so that they could have the advantage of facilities not available to youngsters when he himself was a boy. ”Giving this ground has been a great joy to me” he added, “and I trust the youth of the town will enjoy its use for many generations to come”.
Mr Andrew T Ralston, Hon. Secretary and treasurer of the Isthmian League was a guest at the dinner. “The Isthmian League has never had cause to regret the fact that in 1921 they welcomed Wycombe Wanderers” said Mr Ralston. ”No club has done more to uphold the honour and prestige of the League, on and off the field”. Commenting on Mr Adams' gift to the club, Mr Ralston declared “You have made yourself the envy of every amateur club in the country. They are all looking for a man of the stamp of Frank Adams to come to their aid”
Frank Adams died shorthly after his 90th birthday in 1981 but one of his sons, Jack, was heavily involved with the ground relocation negotiations leading to Wycombe's move to Adams Park in August 1990 - the ground being named after Wycombe's main benefactor. Click here to read more on Frank Adams
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