History

Fans watching from the terraces

Peterborough United Football Club officially came into being on 17th May 1934 when a crowded meeting at the city's now long demolished Angel Hotel decided to go ahead with the formation of a professional club to fill a void left by the collapse of Peterborough and Fletton United some two years earlier. Local councillor Jack Swain, appointed acting chairman, told the gathering: 'I think that with the revival of old enthusiasm in the city, Peterborough will ultimately find a place in the Football League.' It took almost 40 years for that dream to come to fruition in 1960, a milestone which, in itself, was the start of a fresh roller coaster ride through every soccer experience from delight to despair.

One thing which seemed to follow on from the days Peterborough and Fletton was the present club's now world famous 'Posh' nickname. Its origins are obscure but are most widely believed to have stemmed from player manager Pat Tirrel who said in close season of 1921 that he was looking for 'Posh players for a Posh team.' Peterborough and Fletton, also known as the 'Brickies,' folded in 1932 leaving behind debts of £248.1s.11p, a not inconsiderable sum in those days and the new club had first to obtain confirmation from the Football Association and Northamptonshire Football Association that there were no liabilities.

Clearance was quickly obtained but the fledgling club almost scored an own goal before it got off the ground. The delight of representatives at the annual meeting of the Midland League, where a membership application was welcomed with open arms, turned to sheer panic when it was realised they didn't have the cash between them to pay a £20 security deposit, a 10 guinea entry fee and 5 guinea subscription. Thankfully, Grantham Town loaned the cash and back home the Posh officials set about raising funds through the sale of five shilling shares, around 150 turning up for a first shareholders' meeting on 31st July 1934 when a ten strong board of directors, headed by Jack Swain, were elected. Incredibly, when Posh resigned from the Midland League in 1960 after their election to the Football League, the original £20 deposit was refunded!

The London Road ground was hired from Peterborough City Council and former Peterborough and Fletton player Fred Taylor was appointed trainer and groundsman with another Fletton stalwart Jock Porter as what was originally described as 'honorary manager.' First of 11 full time professionals to be signed was former Sheffield United goalkeepeer John Kendall and the line-up also included ex-Fletton favourite Harry 'Bowie' Willis, who had been in the side that achieved the club's greatest FA Cup moment against First Division Birmingham City in 1928.

The weekly Posh wage bill was £38 and admission charges were set at one shilling for men (5p), six pence (2.5p) for women and the unemployed and, one shilling for transfer to the stand. As the big kick-off approached City Council workmen descended to build new dressing rooms at the rear of the stand and local businesses were eager to help, Midgate outfitters E.B.Jackson donating shirts, Hoyles of Westgate gave towels and George Stokes of Church Street presented a new football.

A crowd of 4,033 turned out on 1st September 1934 to see the Midland League campaign begin in some style with a 4-0 beating handed out to Gainsborough Trinity, the distinction of scoring the first Posh goal going to Len Hargreaves who had been signed from Luton Town.

Posh began in green shirts with a while 'V' on the front, white shorts and black socks with a green top carrying two white hoops and as early as November 1934, when a statutory meeting took place, it was suggested the club should think seriously of seeking a league place.