In 1874 members of the Dunfermline Cricket club formed a football section to keep fit throughout the
winter when cricket wasn’t getting played. The Dunfermline club, as they were known, became one of
the leading amateur clubs in the town at the time. A dispute amongst the members caused this football
section to split from the cricket club in 1885. Dunfermline Athletic Football club was formed, with its
headquarters at East End Park, which is its home to this day. Their first success came in 1887 when
they won the Fife Cup. Was this a medal from the Fife Cup?
According to the records of the club no J Lawson played in these games but a J Lawson was on the
register of players for that time in the 2nd XI Fife Cup final victory over Kirkcaldy Wanderers on 23
April that year.
The 1887 2nd XI Fife Cup final is believed to be the first trophy success in the club’s history, coming
just a week before the first team defeated Burntisland Shipyard 3-1 in the senior Fifeshire Cup final.
The research suggests that this might have been the John Lawson who lived in the Pleasance Road,
Halbeath, near where the medal was found, Sadly he was killed in a coal mining accident at the William
Colliery, Crossgates, in 1906 aged 45.
So Les while metal detecting, had found the very first medal ever won by Dunfermline Athletic Football
What happened next is very strange and a bit spooky. Les got an email from the person in charge of
the fans takeover bid wanting to buy the medal for the football club. Les being the man he is made a
decision to donate the medal to the “Pars” (The nickname of Dunfermline Athletic), so it could go home
to its rightful place, in a trophy cabinet in East End Park. Since then the club have come out of
administration, and are flying high in the league, they are in currently sitting in second place.
The board was so happy with Les’s donation that they invited him and his family down for some
hospitality at a future match. Here is what Les said:
“I arrived at Dunfermline with the family and met up with Donald Adamson and Drew Main of the board
of directors at the Garvock House Hotel for lunch. We then headed to the stadium and spent some Pre
game time in the Board room, meeting up with numerous people to do with the club including Bob
Garmony (the new chairman) David McMorrine, (acting General Manager) Former Dunfermline
manager Jim Leishman ( Provost of Fife) and a couple of ex players who had brought along their
medals to display alongside the one I was presenting.
After some photographs were taken of the medals, we headed to one of the corporate boxes with
Drew and Donald to watch the game. We then headed along to where it was arranged that we would
do the formal presentation at half time, on the field.
The announcer read out the story and history of the find to the fans, and on presenting the medal to
Drew and Donald they responded by giving us a standing ovation which was amazing.
We then went back to the corporate box to watch the second half of the game which ended in the
“Pars” beating Ayr 5-1.
Comment from Drew Main :-
We hope that you and your family have a great day with us. It may seem a small thing to you, but it is
almost a talisman for us, because this football club is coming back from the dead. To discover this
artefact just at the critical time is pretty amazing.
I can only conclude that the "Talisman" must have worked today to end the game with that score. All in
all we had a thoroughly enjoyable day as the guests of the “Pars” and I'm even more convinced that
"with a new supporters owned club" the right decision was made in presenting the medal to the “Pars”
where it can be viewed by all the club supporters as part of the clubs heritage.” Les Hannah.
What a great gesture and on behalf of all detectorist’s I say “Well done that man!”
Another victory for Metal Detecting!
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