OFFICIAL PROGRAMME: A-Z Feature- P – Gateshead 28th Jan 17

The A-Z of Torquay United

A reminder of the people, teams, places and animals that have had an impact and influence on Torquay United during our long history – all categorised alphabetically.

Plainmoor was used by various rugby and football clubs before a merger of local teams resulted in the newly named Torquay United moving there in 1921, and the ground has been our home ever since. The stadium has undergone various changes over the years, becoming one of the first lower league grounds to have floodlights in the 1950s’ and then seeing modernisation completed during the 1980s’ and 90s’ to bring the ground up to modern day standards. The most recent change has been Bristow’s Bench, which replaced the old Grandstand in 2012 and has facilities which are shared with Westlands School.
United have featured in the end of season Play-Offs eight times in total; six times in the League and twice in the Conference.   We have emerged victorious twice and both times this was at Wembley Stadium. Blackpool on penalties in 1991, when Dave Bamber’s missed spot-kick handed John Impey’s team of under-dogs promotion to Division Three. Then at the new Wembley versus Cambridge in 2009, when Hargreaves and Sills scored to win promotion back to League Two.
Plymouth Argyle
Argyle and United have generally had a good relationship over the years, and this was illustrated when the ‘Green Army’ came to Plainmoor last season to show their support in our time of need. A number of people have moved between the clubs, the most recent of course is Nathan Blissett; whilst the likes of Mickey Evans, Tommy Tynan and Paul Gibbs (to name just a few) also plied their trades at both Home Park and Plainmoor. Dave Smith and Kevin Hodges also managed both teams in the 80s’ and 90s’. Unsurprisingly the head to head record between the two teams favours Argyle; United have won 11, drawn 15 and lost 25. The most famous wins in recent memory were earned by Martin Ling’s side in 2011-12, with Eunan O’Kane scoring unforgettable goals.
Ernie Pym
Ernie Pym was a local lad playing for St Marychurch Spurs, when United manager Eric Webber signed him up for United in 1952. It was a while before Pym made the first team (spending five years in the reserves and ‘A’ team), but once he got hold of the number 11 shirt he wasn’t letting it go! The nippy winger spent years terrorising opposing full backs, and laying on chance after chance for various United forwards including Tommy Northcott. The team won promotion in 1960, but were relegated back down to Division Four in 1962; even though Pym had scored 21 goals in what was his finest individual season for United. Many higher division scouts watched him but surprisingly no deal was ever concluded and Ernie continued to prosper for us, parading his skills at Plainmoor until 1965.

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I simply live and breathe Football and have supported Torquay United since 1989. I am a season ticket holder on Bristows and a Trust member. I set up TorquayTalk in 2017 to give true supporters a voice and honest opinions on their club.

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