Diary of John Counsell



Feb. 10th - Went with Wigan directors and players to see first round Rugby League Challenge Cup. Result: Wakefield 7 points, Wigan 14 points Morley and Case tries and J. Sullivan 4 goals. Gate £784.

Feb. 24th - Second round Rugby League Challenge Cup. Wigan 7, York 13. About 28,000. Gate £1,478 10s. 11d.


Mar. 10th - Went with other Wigan directors to Mayor of Wigan's Parlour and met the French Rugby team. The Mayor, Councillor J. Horne, gave them a reception of welcome. Result of the match: Wigan 30, France 27. Gate about £403. (below)


Mar. 26th - Attended meeting of Cup and Emergency Committee in Manchester, considering the Frenchmen's tour financially which ended with their match with Salford this evening.

Mar. 31st - Took Billy Howarth to Dr. MacMurray, the specialist, re an injury he sustained on the football field.

Apr. 2nd - Went with directors and players to Salford. Wigan won the game by 21 points to 10. Sullivan beat his goal record of 172 goals in 1922-23 by making his total up-to-date 173.

Apr. 10th - Wigan team went to Oldham for a postponed League game and won 12 points to 7, which put Wigan to second position in the League table.

Apr. 14th - Left Wigan for London and Paris via Dover and Calais. Arrived Paris 8-45 French time. Went with Hutchins and Howarth in taxi Arc de Triomphe, Lido, Maxims, etc. Retired to bed rather late.

Apr. 15th (above) - Had plain breakfast in F. Hutchins' room. Left hotel at 11-30 for Buffalo Stadium and had lunch there with officials of ground. It was a fine match to see. England 32, France 21. Gate in English money £2,130. Nearly 20,000 spectators.

Apr. 21st - Attended Northern League semi-final at Wigan. Result: Wigan 14, Leeds 10. 27,857 spectators, gate £1,464 2s. 1d. Great enthusiasm at Wigan's recovery into last four.

Apr. 23rd - Attended meeting of Cup and Emergency Committee and decided against Oldham and Rochdale playing a match in Dublin on 28th April.

Apr. 25th - All stand tickets for next Saturday's match at Warrington sold.


Apr. 28th - Went to Warrington with Wigan directors and team for final for Northern League Championship. Wigan won by 15 points to Salford 3 points. Gate £2,117 13s. 6d., spectators 31,565. Celebrated same at Central Park on return.

May 1st - Attended Gordon Innes's wedding at Wigan Parish Church and the reception later at Rendezvous Cafe. After attended special meeting of Wigan R.F.C. directors re proxy votes. Recommendation of directors failed to carry.

May 5th - Attended Rugby League Cup final at Wembley. Hunslet 11, Widnes 5. Rather unattractive game.

May 11th - Left Wigan for Dublin. Reception by Deputy Lord Mayor at Dublin.

May 12th - At Shelbourne Park, Dublin. Wigan 32, Warrington 19. Gate £750. Attended splendid dinner given by the Lord Mayor of Dublin at the Dolphin Hotel, to both teams (below)


May 14th - Caught 9 o'clock boat at Kingstown for Holyhead and Wigan. Reception by Wigan Mayor, Councillor J. Horne, who had been with us, at Mayor's Parlour. Had tea with directors and players at Grill Room, and then paraded the town with team and two cups.

July 31st - Signed on A. Ellaby (below), who is living at Blackpool

Aug. 23rd - Attended Wigan Football Club directors' meeting. Charles Seeling, Junr., had not yet signed on for this season.

Aug. 24th - Went with Alderman Walkden to see about secretaire and enlarged photos for Jim Sullivan.


Aug. 30th - Attended meeting of Wigan Football Club directors, Long meeting re negotiating for transfer for W. Howarth.

Aug. 31st - Special meeting of Wigan Football Club directors re transfer of Howarth to Keighley.

Sept. 14th - Attended Lancashire County Rugby League Football Committee in Manchester to hear case - Oldham v. Wigan, second round cup-tie. Result was that the match be played at Oldham on Tuesday, 25th September. Alderman Walkden and Geo. Taylor represented Wigan.

Sept. 15th - Went to Central Park to see Wigan v. Batley. It was rather a rough game and Gee (Wigan) and Collier (Batley) were ordered off.

Oct. 6th- Went with A. Peacock and R. Hough to Leeds. Result: Leeds 4, Wigan 4. A very hard game. The defences of both sides were superior to the attacks.

Oct. 9th - Went with Alderman Walkden to Harry Williams and got A.V. Twose (below) a job with him on a month's trial.


Oct. 10th - Attended special meeting of Lancashire County Football League Committee to consider protest of Broughton against cup final being played at Swinton.

Oct. 13th - Drizzling all afternoon at Central Park. Wigan beat Warrington 12-5. It was a very hard game with a slippery ball. There were 14,000 spectators and the receipts £595.

Oct. 20th - Lancashire Challenge Cup final at Swinton. Result: Salford 21, Wigan 12. The gate was £2,191 and there were 33,544 spectators.

Oct. 27th - Went in the afternoon to St. Helens to observe Referee J.F. Armstrong in the match between St. Helens Recs. and Bradford Northern. I considered him fair.

Nov. 9th - Attended special meeting of Wigan R.F.C. directors and transferred W. Howarth to Liverpool Stanley.

Nov. 10th - At Central Park. Wigan 17, York 8. Wigan are still unbeaten this season in the League.

Nov. 21st - Liverpool Stanley beat Wigan at Liverpool by 12 points to 4.

Nov. 27th - Negotiated with Alderman Walkden and g. Taylor with Bradford Northern Football Club representatives for the transfer of Joe Wilson of Wigan, to Bradford.

Nov. 30th - Attended with Alderman Jas. Walkden and G. Taylor and transferred J. Wilson, the Australian, to Bradford.

Dec. 1st - Went with A. Simm and R. Hough to York with Wigan team. Result: York 19, Wigan 8. It was Wigan's second Northern League defeat this season. The York forwards played a great game in the loose.

Dec. 8th - Wigan Athletic beat Torquay in the second round Association Cup 3-2.