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Club’s anniversary spawns supplement series

A regional daily is planning a series of nine monthly supplements to mark the 150th anniversary of its local football club.

Stoke City – founder members of the Football League in 1888 – were first formed in 1863 and are believed to be the second oldest professional club in the world behind Notts County.

Now Stoke-based daily The Sentinel is producing a supplement for every month of the club’s anniversary season, each one focusing on a period of its history.

Part One, covering the period 1863-1930, appeared in Monday’s paper, with the front page designed to look like an old cigarette-card style design.

The supplements are being put together by sports editor Keith Wales with the help of diehard Stoke fans Simon Lowe, David Lee and Richard Murphy.

Said Keith: “We were keen to commemorate a very special anniversary for Stoke City Football Club so we thought it would be great to tie it into the new season as it unfolds and publish a number of supplements. This also gives us the option of publishing far more material than would otherwise have been possible with a single standalone product.”

Keith added that researching the supplements had already thrown up some fascinating stories from the early days of professional football including the bizarre case of goalkeeper Dr Leigh Richmond Roose.

Known as Dickie to the fans, he joined the club in 1901 with a reputation as something of a ladies’ man.

Said Keith:  “While not busy between the sticks, he was renowned for flirting with his female fans and also sitting on top of his goalposts during breaks in play.

“After leaving the club, he made the mistake of returning to play as a “ringer” for Port Vale in a county cup match and just escaped being thrown in the River Trent by angry Stoke fans!”