I am delighted to announce that after many months of perseverance, and with the generous assistance of several individuals, the headstone for St Albans City’s greatest goalscorer, Wilfred Harry ‘Billy’ Minter, has been erected on his final resting place.
Wilf, as he was known by family members, scored 356 goals in 362 games for the City, mostly during the 1920s. it is a record that remains unsurpassed, as is his record of 57 goals in 37 games for the Hertfordshire county team.
With Minter in our team, City won the Isthmian League three times and the Athenian League twice; three times we reached the semi-final of the Amateur Cup. He scored twice as City beat Brentford in November 1924 in what remains as our only victory over Football League opposition in the FA Cup. Born and bred in the city he won three caps with the England Amateur international team as well as being chosen to tour Sweden with the Full international party, an honour that he had to unfortunately decline due to business commitments.
November 22nd will mark the 95th anniversary of the day he secured a place in the record books with a feat that will, surely, never be beaten. On that day City lost 8-7 to Dulwich Hamlet in a 4th Round Qualifying replay of the FA Cup at Champion Hill. Wilf, or Billy as most football followers call him, scored all of our seven goals that day and no other player has scored that number of goals in an FA Cup tie and still finished on the losing side.
Minter died in December 1984 but when he was buried the following month he was placed into an unmarked grave. Why he was not given a headstone at this time has never been established but we are thrilled to confirm that the great man’s final resting place now has a suitable memorial.
The cost of the headstone is just short of £2,700. The response by supporters and other interested and kind-hearted people has seen us come very close to raising that sum. To make the fundraising a complete success we require another, approximately, £400. A JustGiving Page will remain open until the end of the month and donations can be made until that time. Please follow the link to make a donation https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/david-tavener
In the St Albans City clubhouse is a plaque, donated by Peter A. Taylor, Leigh Page, Robert Walkley and myself, in memory of the nine St Albans City players who lost their lives in the two World Wars. This plaque, and the Minter headstone, are two top class tributes to the proud history of St Albans City Football Club and the glorious individuals who have contributed so much in making the Club what it is today.
Sincere thanks are extended to the following for their assistance and support in ensuring that the Headstone Appeal came to a successful conclusion: Ian Ridley (the first to make a contribution and get the ball rolling), Peter A. Taylor (fellow Club Historian), Danny Smith (Radio Verulam), Bill Chapman (plot owner), Nikki Chandler (Phillips Memorials) and Belle Daytonn (Hatfield Road Cemetery).
St Albans City Club Historian