All posts by Gemma Muirhead

A Tribute to Motherwell’s Joe Wark – by David Miller, Digitisation and Outreach Officer, Scottish Football Museum



In the summer of 2012, I began work digitising Scottish Football Museum content for Alzheimer Scotland’s Football Memories project. For the first few months in the role I had no access to service users, so attended an open day at Fir Park for the Motherwell group connected with the project for more information on how our content could be delivered to service users. Here I met Norrie Gallagher who was co-ordinating the Motherwell group. He suggested that together we could help produce a book of photographic memories for Joe Wark, who was a former Motherwell footballer, living with Alzheimer’s disease.


I didn’t know a great deal about Joe’s career, though it was clear he meant a great deal to Motherwell Football Club and it wasn’t difficult to find out information. This was a man who played for Motherwell for 16 years, under 8 different renowned full time managers, and played for a Scottish League side against England. I was understandably nervous when Norrie and I were first invited to the Wark home to begin work on the book, but I needn’t have been. Joe and his wife Maureen made us feel very comfortable and Joe was instantly very entertaining company. For months Norrie and I were privileged to spend afternoons in Joe’s company, drinking coffee and listening to years worth of footballing anecdotes, until the book was completed.


Joe did a great deal to promote the project. He was very open about his condition and when the book was completed, he appeared in the Evening Times to promote the work the project was doing. The book was also put on display at the Summerlee Museum in Coatbridge. Joe attended the Football Memories reminiscence groups with Norrie at Fir Park, helping to give other men the confidence to join and share their football memories in a safe environment. Through working with Joe, I also began work as a support worker for Alzheimer Scotland and was then given a full-time role with the Scottish Football Museum. Were it not for Joe’s selflessness, I can’t be certain either of these roles would have been made available to me.


I will always look back fondly on the afternoons myself and Norrie spent with Joe. Motherwell fans remember an honest, hard working footballer, who despite his League cap, and appearing in the Sunday Mail team of the year, merited far greater recognition than he received in his playing days. I remember a kind gentleman, who shared freely from his life with 2 relative strangers, and kept them captivated for months. I’ll always consider that a privilege.

Football Exhibition is now open The Howgate Shopping Centre

Football Exhibition is now open The Howgate Shopping Centre and offers a great selection of exhibits from The Scottish Football Museum and has an area dedicated to the history of Falkirk Football Club.

The free exhibition is open every day from 10am-4pm and 12pm-4pm on Sunday.IMG_20150915_160634 IMG_20150915_160731 IMG_20150915_160804 IMG_20150915_160859

The exhibition will run for the next two months and is a partnership between the museum, the shopping centre, Allied International UK, Visit Scotland and local design agency Eden. The exhibition will be staffed by volunteers from the Falkirk Local History Society.

Jock Stein Display

On the anniversary of the tragic death of Jock Stein the museum has created a small display to remember one of Scottish football’s greatest ever managers.

Items currently on display include a programme, ticket and pennant from Jock’s final match at Ninian Park, Cardiff as well as a photograph and presentation gift (cigar box) from his testimonial match in 1978. Additional items relating to Jock’s successful time with Dunfermline, Celtic and Scotland can also be found in other areas of the museum.





“Following the ‘Lok” Exhibition is back!

Following the ‘Lok and has been created by young photographer Ross MacDonald.Following the 'Lok' We first came across Ross when he was a finalist in the Herald photographic competition for the Kelvingrove football exhibition.

Following the ‘Lok’

Ross MacDonald has been going to watch semi-professional team, Pollok Football Club since he was two years old, when his dad first started to bring him along to games. A passionate fan and keen photographer, he became the official club photographer in mid-November 2012 when asked by the club after taking his camera to numerous matches.

By the start of the 2013-14 season, Ross was attending college to study photography out with school. Through this season, his talent began to grow as Ross developed the skills necessary to get the best results. This exhibition follows Ross’ work from his time at Pollok, revealing how he and his team have progressed over that period.

This exhibition is FREE to view, just ask at the Museum reception.

Museum Welcomes Sergio Lodise

The museum was delighted to welcome Sergio Lodise, historian of famous Argentine side Boca Juniors, to Hampden Park. Club Atlético Boca Juniors from Buenos Aries are one of South America’s greatest teams and share a famous rivalry with Club Atlético River Plate which is called Superclasico. Notable Boca players have included Claudio Caniggia, Juan Román Riquelme, Carlos Tevez and, of course, Diego Maradona.


House of Commons Invite for the Scottish Football Museum

Scottish Football Museum Curator Richard McBrearty has been invited to a special event in the House of Commons tomorrow (July 8).

The Heritage Lottery Fund is holding the Parliamentary reception to showcase community projects funded by the HLF, marking the Centenary and exploring the heritage of the First World War.

The Museum, based in Hampden Park, is currently hosting a Football and First World War exhibition. This project conserved and made available for display the Colour (Flag) of the 16th Service Battalion, Royal Scots, who were more famously known as McCrae’s Battalion. It has been an excellent collaboration as the owners of the Colour (the Royal Scots Museum at Edinburgh Castle) have kindly consented for the historic artefact to stay with the Scottish Football Museum for as long as it remains on public display.

The Battalion included footballers from several Scottish clubs.

The HLF is funding hundreds of projects across the United Kingdom based on the conflict and the Scottish Football Museum is one of just seven invited to London for the event.

Chair of the Scottish Football Museum Robert Craig commented: “The invitation is testament to the hard work of all the Museum staff involved.  I am delighted with the recognition and delighted for everyone involved with the Museum.”

Stewart McDonald, MP for Glasgow South said: “It is important that we remember the impact of this war, one hundred years on. I am particularly pleased for the Scottish Football Museum, a wonderful attraction within my constituency”.

The Heritage Lottery Fund has made an additional £4million available in 2015/2016 for communities looking to explore, conserve and share local heritage of the First World War. Grants are available between £3,000 and £10,000. This new money will help even more people get involved and explore a greater range of stories surrounding the Battle of the Somme which took place 100 years ago next year.

Football and the First World War

Thursday 9th July 2015

Hampden Park – Main Stand – Auditorium

(Located on Level Two along from the Museum)

12.00 to 15.00

Admission: Free


Guest Speakers

Michael White – Falkirk Football Club, 1914 -1918.

Tom Purdie – Hearts FC and the First World War.

Ian McCallum – Celtic FC – Season 1914-15.

Jim Hastie – Queen’s Park FC and the Great War.

Football on Parade Exhibition