Seagulls history on show

Seagulls player Barry Round with the 1990 premiership cup. (Supplied)

Michaela Meade

One of the oldest sporting clubs in the world is showcasing its history to fans and the community for the first time in 157 years.

As part of the 2021 Australian Heritage Festival, Williamstown Football Club will display “great historical moments” of the club’s past, ranging from 1864 to the present day.

The Seagulls have 16 premierships and numerous competition trophies to their name.

Williamstown Football Club chief executive Jason Reddick said the opportunity to showcase the club’s history is “very exciting”.

“As one of the oldest football clubs in the world we are very proud of our history and we see the Australian Heritage Festival as the chance to showcase our collection and stories to the wider public for the first time,” Reddick said.

“This is an opportunity to help the community learn more about our journey, our successes and struggles, that have shaped us into the proud club we are today.

“It’s another way we can connect with the community and continue to grow and strengthen those ties.”

Seagulls memorabilia, including many items never before presented to the public, will be on display at the Seaview Events Centre from Saturday, April 17 until Thursday, April 22.

Various club notables, including past players and presidents, will give presentations, and guided tours of the players, coaching and medical facilities will be available.

Videos will be displayed of historical events throughout the club’s history.

The five categories of celebrated eras are 1864-1939, 1940-1959, 1980-1999, and 2000-present.

Famous players who have represented the club include Ron Todd, Harry ‘Soapy’ Vallance, Des Fothergill, Gerry ‘the Monster’ Callahan, Barry Round, Terry Wheeler.

Rumour has it that infamous bushranger Ned Kelly played for the club at one stage.

Reddick said attendees can expect a lot of exciting content.

“There will even be a special presentation on Ned Kelly and the much publicised story of him playing for the club whilst on prison release.

“We will provide tours of the current change rooms where we display further playing records and some of the history of our VFLW team that was established in 2018.”

“We welcome all the community and anyone from far and wide with an interest in history and/or Aussie Rules football, to come and be entertained by the rich history and stories that we have to share with you.”

Entry is by gold coin donation.