Re­mem­ber­ing Ox­ford United’s 1967-68 Di­vi­sion Three cham­pi­ons

The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By Neil Fissler

CYRIL BEAVON was Arthur Turner’s first sign­ing for Head­ing­ton United in Jan­uary 1959 when they were a South­ern League club. And a decade later, by the time that he left Ox­ford United as they were re­branded, he had won two South­ern League ti­tles and helped the club win pro­mo­tion to the Sec­ond Di­vi­sion.

The for­mer Eng­land youth in­ter­na­tional started his ca­reer at Wolves but his ca­reer stalled af­ter do­ing his two years’ Na­tional Ser­vice in the RAF.


Beavon says that he jumped at the chance of join­ing Head­ing­ton be­cause he in­creased his Wolves wages by a pound a week to £18.

“It wasn’t a gam­ble join­ing Head­ing­ton be­cause I got more money,” he said. “In 1959, they had a max­i­mum wage in the Foot­ball League but they didn’t in the South­ern League.

“I think my third game for Head­ing­ton was against Bath City and who should be play­ing for them but Stan Mortensen (who scored an FA Cup fi­nal hat-trick in 1953).

“They also had Char­lie Flem­ing, the ex-Scot­tish in­ter­na­tional from Sun­der­land, and that was be­cause they were on a lot more money.”

Beavon was an ever-present for the club in their first sea­son in the Foot­ball League.

Af­ter three sea­sons, they were pro­moted in fourth place from Di­vi­sion Four and then, af­ter an­other three sea­sons, were crowned cham­pi­ons of Di­vi­sion Three.

Beavon ad­mits that Turner built a side on de­fence, which kept clean sheets in each of the last four games, while tac­tics were of­ten changed dur­ing games by Ron Atkin­son, show­ing early signs of his man­age­rial prom­ise.

“Arthur was a de­fender him­self and we al­ways said that he could pick the de­fend­ers but couldn’t pick the for­wards,” he added. “He didn’t like us to play a lot of foot­ball, he liked to lump the ball for­ward.

“But we used to change the tac­tics our­selves in some games be­cause we liked to play a bit of foot­ball. Ron was very much the leader in that re­spect.” 1. Colin Har­ring­ton: He lives in Mid­dle Bar­ton, Ox­ford­shire, and ran his own ac­coun­tancy firm based in Chip­ping Nor­ton. Also acted as a com­pany sec­re­tary. 2. John Shuker: United’s record ap­pear­ance holder set­tled in Ox­ford­shire and was a publi­can in Bamp­ton as well as man­ag­ing Clan­field and Wit­ney Academy. 3. Rod Smith­son: Joined Ar­se­nal as a grounds­man and man­aged Wit­ney Town. Lives in Head­ing­ton, Ox­ford, and was gen­eral sec­re­tary of Rover Sports and So­cial Club in Cowley for over 30 years. 4. Jim Bar­ron: Man­aged IA in Ice­land and Chel­tenham Town. He has coached at Birm­ing­ham, Wolves and Northamp­ton. Now scouts for Ever­ton. 5. Colin Clarke: Youth team coach at Charl­ton and As­ton Villa be­fore mov­ing to the United States, hold­ing a va­ri­ety of dif­fer­ent coach­ing posts. His last job be­fore re­tir­ing was at the Uni­ver­sity of Tulsa. 6. John Lloyd: Is now re­tired and living in the Es­sex area af­ter fin­ish­ing his ca­reer in semi-pro­fes­sional foot­ball in Kent. 7. Mau­rice Kyle: Worked as an elec­tri­cian and man­aged Wan­tage, Ox­ford City and Wit­ney Town. Lived in Ox­ford un­til his death from can­cer in Jan­uary 1981. 8. Cyril Beavon: Cyril lives in Head­ing­ton, Ox­ford. Was a milk tanker de­liv­ery driver and man­aged Bices­ter Town. His son Stu­art played for Read­ing for a decade while his grand­son, also Stu­art, cur­rently plays for Bur­ton Al­bion. 9. Ken Fish: South African in­ter­na­tional spent more than 20 years on the coach­ing staff at the Manor Ground. He died in Stoke-on-Trent in Au­gust 2005, aged 91. 10. Arthur Turner: Went on to be­come U’s gen­eral manager and then scouted for Rother­ham and Sh­effield Wed­nes­day. He died in Sh­effield in Jan­uary 1994, aged 84. 11. Gra­ham Atkin­son: The club record scorer and brother of Ron ran Mil­ton Park Stores near Did­cot but now lives in re­tire­ment in Ros­son-Wye. 12. Ken Skeen: Ran Alu-Fab in Chel­tenham, then took the job of sec­re­tary-manager at Lil­ley Brook Golf Club in Charl­ton Kings be­fore be­com­ing a painter and dec­o­ra­tor. 13. Ron Atkin­son: Uni­ver­sally known as ‘Big Ron’, he has worked in man­age­ment and as a tele­vi­sion pun­dit. The for­mer Manch­ester United manager is now living in Warwickshire. 14. Mickey Bul­lock: Af­ter man­ag­ing Hal­i­fax Town, Goole Town and Os­sett Town, he scouted for a num­ber of clubs and worked as an in­sur­ance con­sul­tant. 15. David Sloan: For­mer North­ern Ire­land winger was care­taker of Bur­ton-upon-Stather Pri­mary School in Scun­thorpe for nearly 25 years un­til re­tire­ment. 16. Barry Thorn­ley: Worked in in­sur­ance for Liver­pool Vic­to­ria in Broad­stairs, Kent, but is now living in King’s Lynn, Nor­folk. 17. Ken McCluskey: The club sec­re­tary was living in Ban­bury, Ox­ford­shire, un­til his death in April 2013, aged 82. NOT PIC­TURED Ge­orge Kerr: Man­aged Lin­coln City (twice), Grimsby Town, Rother­ham United and Bos­ton United prior to be­com­ing an ex­pert sum­mariser on BBC Ra­dio Hum­ber­side. Peter Hatch: Set­tled in the Ex­eter area and is one of many for­mer play­ers who is earn­ing his living work­ing as a post­man. Ken Hale: Af­ter be­com­ing play­er­man­ager of Dar­ling­ton and man­ag­ing Hartle­pool, he ran a Sun­der­land newsagents and worked for the lo­cal health author­ity. Ken died in Jan­uary 2015, aged 75. Brian Sherratt: Is now re­tired and living in Thame. At one time worked at the Ox­ford Ice Rink. Tony Buck: Af­ter set­tling in Northamp­ton, he be­came ser­vice manager for a Ford deal­er­ship and then ser­vice con­troller at Axux (UK). John Evanson: He went into the pub and food trade for over 30 years and is run­ning The Black Horse in Cher­hill, Wilt­shire. Peter Hig­gins: Is now living in his na­tive Not­ting­hamshire in re­tire­ment af­ter re­turn­ing to the area when he hung up his boots. Tony Jones: Was an HGV driver based in Litch­field, Stafford­shire, un­til his death in April 1990, aged 52. Dick Lu­cas: He lives in Wit­ney and is a direc­tor of elec­tri­cal whole­salers, Lu­cas & Busby.


















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