“Palpable relief all around The Hawthorns on Saturday as Albion finally ended their stuttering run of late, with an at best gritty performance against bottom of the table Luton Town, who as you would expect, given their position in the league, were fighting for their lives, and were never going to make it easy for an Albion side struggling to find their old form. A two nil victory was probably a true reflection of the game in the end, but full marks to the ‘Hatters’, who are certainly not going down without a fight.
In the Regis Suite, the highlight of the afternoon, was the appearance along with his son Carl, of former Club Director Mr Joe Brandrick, guests of the Former Players Association for the match. Joe, who has not enjoyed the best of health of late, was as ‘chipper’ as ever, amongst his old friends, and it was a delight to be in his company once again, reminding ourselves of the great service he has given to our football club, indeed without his valuable support, the club would not be enjoying the prosperity it enjoys today. Indeed his legacy can be seen all around our magnificent stadium, as we browse the the superb pictures and other memorabilia, that was the vision of one Joe Barndrick. The Association wishes him improved health in 2020.
Joining Joe in the Regis Suite were Treasurer Norman Westbury, Bobby Taylor, Colin Addison along with another old friend of the association Peter Isaac, Wembley hero Dennis Clarke and birthday boy Vernon Hodgson. Sixty years young and still looking as dapper as ever.It was also brilliant to see Andy Johnson and Tony Brown, popping in to catch up with old friends, with Tony doing the honours presenting a club cap to the family of former Albion player Gilbert Williams who made 37 first team appearances for the ‘Throstles’ in the forties, and like many of his time, his career suffered due to the Second World War, but definitely a local boy from Greets Green that made good. It was wonderful to see so many membes of his family in the Suite for the presentation.
On duty on the other side of the Shrine in the East Stand suites were our President Brendon Batson OBE, sharing the limelight with former legendary centre back Ally Robertson, whilst ’93 Promotion heroes, Bernard McNally and Ian Hamilton, were on hand to join pre-match tours and visit other Corporate areas before the kick-off. It was also nice to catch up with another former ‘Throstle’, tough tackling midfielder Nigel Quashie who is a staunch Business supporter of the Albion these days, as well as being an avid fan, and a member of the Association. Alway a bonus to bump into Nigel and his family.”
We all look forward to Albion’s next ‘Championship hurdle’ at Millwall next Sunday.(9th February)”