Manchester United are today arguably the biggest name in football – successful and renowned across the world. United, though, have had their financial struggles, none more-so than in 1931.
It is down to one man that United still exist to this day. When all seemed lost, and the banks had called time on the club, a local businessman stepped forward to bring the club back from the dead and set the foundations for the future. That man was James W Gibson.
Over 20 years, between 1931 and 1951, James Gibson not only stood as guarantor for United’s debt, he ploughed £40,000 of his own money into the club. Along with Walter Crickmer, James created the Manchester United Junior Athletic Club – the youth team system which helped to bring through the Busby Babes – as well as taking a chance on an untried manager named Matt Busby.
James was responsible for turning the fortunes of the club around, rebuilding United from financial ruin.
James Gibson is an unsung hero. Without him Manchester United may not now exist. His story is to be told in an exhibition at Hale Library, Leigh Road, Hale WA15 9BG, running between January 14/21. The opening will take place at 11am on Monday, January 14th.
(James W Gibson story Pt 1). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBcOiQEweMY
(James W Gibson Pt 2). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQ-LHBzUQG4