When even Jim Farry blocked a royal postponement


25 years ago, Scotland were due to play a World Cup qualification game against Belarus on the day of Princess Diana’s funeral.  The SFA, then run by chief exec Jim Farry, the same man who was eventually removed from office for delaying Celtic’s registration of Jorge Cadete, decided the game should proceed as planned.

Whatever you think of Farry, he acted without concern for the royalist contingent.  Despite the SFA’s offices being vandalised and Scottish Secretary, Donald Dewer, applying political pressure, Farry dug in:   ”We have taken heed of the various viewpoints, but let’s be reasonable about this, life does and must go on.”

He did not act alone, the SFA International Committee were involved, and they included Celtic’s Jack McGinn, and the Greatest Football Administrator the world has ever known, Campbell Ogilvie!  This was a strange time in Britain, maybe the strangest few weeks of the last century.

Royalists were split between backers of the self-styled Queen of Hearts (honestly), and those in the minority, who sided with the actual Queen.  The Queen, a bit like Farry, held out as long as she could against the indulgent wallowing infecting millions, by resisting calls to lower flags to half-mast.

Before the end of the week, royal flags were lowered and the Scotland game was postponed.  Those of us who never took an interest in royalty were often heard saying “Let’s be reasonable about this”, but were largely ignored.

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  1. lionsroar67



    The BBC commentator who made the initial remark re John Knox was Robert Lacey, an writer and Royal historian of some note. The response, “That’s how history remembers him” came from Martin Geissler, again an experienced journalist and in my view BBC Scotland’s best news broadcaster. Lacey’s statement re Catholics in Scotland was historically inaccurate, and I at first thought that Geissler’s remark was a gentle dig at the historian who had made it. John Knox did not drive Scotland’s Catholics out of anywhere, he was an ordained Catholic priest, who himself had been exiled from Scotland. He could more accurately be described as the founder of the reformed Church of Scotland, written into law, (Acts which I think Charles was referring to yesterday) in 1560. It was these Acts which outlawed the Catholicism led from Rome. No doubt some Catholics left Scotland as a result but initially at least, in the 1560s, Scotland probably remained majority Catholic. Not easy to maintain without a Catholic Queen, or priests for that matter. Did struggle on, among noble families and the more remote parts. Lacey is self evidently not an expert in that period.

  2. Re Tuesday night – the formalities in Scotlauwill be over by 4pm – so what’s the problem for a match in Glasgow in the evening?


    What we now have is loads of bhoys and ghirls in Glasgow’s pubs on Wednesday at the same time as thousands of hunnites are getting bevvied before their game – car crash in the pipeline


    Incompetent at the very best from the powers that be.

  3. Earnest



    From someone who has plenty to type .. any chance of an answer ?





    Any thoughts ???




    I think more people either change the channel or turn the tv off … because she was head of your state for 70yrs




    Do you think more people watched or didn’t ?



    Fair play if no retort … but you did instigate the conversation



    Hail Hail

  4. bournesouprecipe on




    Looking at the map from the Imperial bar the next stop for you was inevitably the Lauriesron 👍

  5. GFTB on 11TH SEPTEMBER 2022 6:56 PM




    ‘I think more people either change the channel or turn the tv off … because she was head of your state for 70yrs’







    I neither know nor care and have no idea what relevance this has to the point I made.

  6. Earnest 7.05pm



    You related the coffin watchers to football



    Surely you must remember ?



    By the way I also think about the majority of your non Celtic posts



    “neither know nor care and have no idea what relevance” of your input

  7. bigrailroadblues on

    BOURNESOUPRECIPE 7.00. Well spotted young fella. I’ll raise a Guinness to your good health. 👍

  8. GFTB on 11TH SEPTEMBER 2022 7:12 PM


    Earnest 7.05pm







    ‘You related the coffin watchers to football’







    In a specific way ie each activity was as lacking in objective rationality as the other.



    What that has to do with viewing figures escapes me.

  9. Sent a slightly less gross and disgusting version of this to my Eldest, at UNI.



    She sent me the below, both her and my other child, just started his GCE’s.



    This is apparently all over tik tok, both my kids had seen the below.



    Imo opinion James Connolly, had this great man been alive today hewould have doneeverything he could to make the below go viral.




  10. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to the people who responded to my request for some books to delve into.



    Sick to my stomach at the full great leader, State Propaganda garbage.



    I am away for a bit.




  11. bigrailroadblues on

    An Tearmann 7.37. I’m like the Glasgow Celtic. I never stop. Or as you say when I’m told to.🤣

  12. Hot Smoked, yer wise,Yer Wise.



    Celtic is very Harry Harry Hood.



    Incredible in fact.



    Here we g0 Again.







  13. Earnest 7.56pm



    It’s all about the viewing figures …



    Ask yourself why you would equate todays “event” to football ?



    Again … you’ve might have more interest in a hearse carrying a wee 96yr old wummin than Celtic .. you seem to post much more about the Royals than the Tic

  14. Ye see yon birkie ca’d a lord,


    Wha struts, an’ stares, an’ a’ that,


    Tho’ hundreds worship at his word,


    He’s but a coof for a’ that.


    For a’ that, an’ a’ that,


    His ribband, star, an’ a’ that,


    The man o’ independent mind,


    He looks an’ laughs at a’ that.



    A Prince can mak a belted knight,


    A marquis, duke, an’ a’ that!


    But an honest man’s aboon his might –


    Guid faith, he mauna fa’ that!


    For a’ that, an’ a’ that,


    Their dignities, an’ a’ that,


    The pith o’ Sense an’ pride o’ Worth


    Are higher rank than a’ that.

  15. Just tuned into Sky Sports, they are doing highlights of the 10 biggest funerals of last year. It’ll never catch on,

  16. GFTB on 11TH SEPTEMBER 2022 8:24 PM



    You’ve completely missed the point, but don’t worry about it.

  17. Earnest 9.01pm



    It’s not the first time and am confident it won’t be the last



    Hope your looking forward to Donestk



    I would be delighted if you ever turn out to be an actual Celtic fan … I have wrote it before and will write it again … your always very courteous in your correspondence… if not a Tim you come across as a decent person … with very different views from most Celtic fans I have ever known



    I bid you good night



    Shahtar 1 Celtic 3 🍀🍀🍀



    A Bhoy can dream

  18. AT 9.21pm



    David Low really wanted to be part of Rangers mark 2



    Think he “bears” a grudge they didn’t want his financial experience :-)

  19. Ernie 4.12



    Maybe you are right. Maybe not. Minimal jeopardy in watching a fleeting glimpse of a hearse though.



    Football has plenty jeopardy but obviously not up to your high moral code.



    Maybe a different career for you would have made more sense.



    Ever thought about Driving funeral cars or embalming for the rich and famous. Less to be bitter about there.