On this day in 1916, former Wolves captain and the club’s greatest ever manager Stan Cullis was born. Wolves Foundation were recently privileged to help one of Stan’s relatives enjoy a very special afternoon as part of her 100th birthday celebrations.
A relative of Wolves’ former captain and greatest ever manager Stan Cullis has marked her 100th birthday by celebrating with the Molineux Memories group run by Wolves Foundation.
Betty Day, a second cousin to Stan, spent a couple of hours regaling the group with memories of the player and manager who masterminded Wolves’ three league title wins and one FA Cup, including attending his wedding and how her father picked up a young Cullis from Ellesmere Port to bring him to Molineux for his trial as a player.
She was then given a birthday cake and bag of Wolves-related goodies before a tour of the stadium during which she was able to view up close, for the very first time, the spectacular Stan Cullis statue.
“Betty was fantastic – especially when you consider she is 100 – and she was so clued up about Stan with all her recollections,” said Steve Maiden, health officer with Wolves Foundation and among the team overseeing Molineux Memories.
“She also brought in photographs, letters and press cuttings and told some fantastic stories which had everyone engrossed.
“For a couple of hours, she took all of us into the world of Stan away from football and it was really interesting and enlightening.”
Molineux Memories is a group which meets weekly at Molineux for people with dementia and their carers, and, although Betty doesn’t suffer with dementia, the idea for her to visit to share her stories about Stan arose following conversations at the Cedars Residential Home in Stourbridge, where she is a resident.
Living in Wednesfield all her life, Betty was still based independently at home until a year ago, and she was accompanied on the Molineux visit by her niece Carole Mountford and her husband, Peter.
“It was such a lovely afternoon with Auntie Betty chatting to the group and everyone chipping in with the bits they knew about Stanley,” says Carole.
“She hasn’t stopped talking about the visit since and will only have her cup of tea in the Wolves mug she was given, because it keeps it nice and warm!
“She was also able to chat and share memories with people about the local area and not just football, and getting to see the statue was particularly special.
“Auntie Betty had only ever been to Molineux for the reception following Stan’s funeral, and while we had driven past to look at the statue it was lovely for her to see it close up.”
Stan, who passed away in 2001, would have been 106 on October 25th, and it was last month that Betty celebrated her landmark birthday which included being among the last to receive a card from the Queen before her passing.
That card is now kept religiously in her handbag to show people whenever she can, but her special day at Molineux is also very much up there among her memories.
Betty said: “I couldn’t believe how kind everyone was and what a beautiful place Molineux is.
“I was so impressed by everything including the changing rooms, the tunnel, even the players’ bath!
“And it was great to see the statue up close for the first time, which is a wonderful likeness.
“I didn’t expect to have such a welcome or the presents and the birthday cake, it was lovely to meet everyone and was a truly memorable visit.”
Just for good measure, the Wolves players also marked Betty’s birthday last month with a celebration of their own – a first Premier League win of the season at home to Southampton!