Secretaries Union Going Strong

Out-Of-Office Catch-Up For Popular Duo

How much knowledge do these two have……and why don’t secretaries ever write books?

Two of Wolves’ longest-serving former secretaries have had another of their regular meet-ups – and invited us along to be part of it.

Keith Pearson and Richard Skirrow live on opposite sides of Stafford and have built on the relationship that came with being contemporaries in similar office at different clubs by becoming good friends in retirement.

VAR, Financial Fair Play, the size of transfer fees and Wolves in Europe were among the matters discussed over coffee yesterday as the conversation rattled along for two highly enjoyable hours.

There was almost 40 years of Molineux experience around the table, with Pearson having served the club from 1977 to 1994 and, following a much briefer stint with Tom Finn as successor, Skirrow in office from 1996 until 2017.

“There were a lot of very challenging times in the 1980s but I look back on my time at the club without regrets and with very happy memories,” Keith said.

“I very much liked working with Graham Turner for example and that team did a lot to lift the club after everything that had gone before.

“I liked Derek Dougan as well and found he could be charming but we had so many low points in the early and mid-1980s before Steve Bull and Andy Thompson turned up from Albion one morning looking like naughty schoolboys and everything changed almost straightaway.

“To see Wolves return from those depths, in a rebuilt stadium, was very satisfying and you look at the way they are now and just feel so grateful we survived.”

Keith was initially appointed as club accountant during Sammy Chung’s reign as manager and was made secretary when Peter Redfearn left to join Marks & Spencer.

He did much to pull the club through the darkest of times, even turning down the chance to switch to Albion at one point, and it was a huge shock when the sudden departure of this stabilising and loyal figure was announced in November, 1994.

He subsequently joined Derby for a decade that was marked by promotion to the top flight and their move to a new stadium while Wolves drafted in Finn for a couple of years before Skirrow’s arrival from West Ham.

And we are delighted to report how Richard has been spending at least part of his time since opting for a more leisurely life that includes regular Molineux attendance and a role as chaperone to the UEFA delegate at the club’s Europa League home matches.

An autographed 1980s photo showing Graham Turner.

With his predecessor having had a hip replacement, a heart attack and other health problems in recent years, Richard has stepped up to the mark admirably.

He has played his part in ensuring Keith gets out plenty, sometimes on walks, and says: “A few former secretaries, like Steve Stride from Villa, John Alexander (Manchester United) and Tom Finn, who went to Blackburn, have stayed in pretty close contact and meet up from time to time.

“Keith and I obviously have loads in common through Wolves and I have enjoyed keeping him informed, doing my bit to help his recovery and passing on some programmes for him to read.”

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