ALEXANDER ALLAN


Alexander Crawford Allan played for Ardrossan Ensign Football Club, later called Ardrossan Football Club, for several years from at least 1886 to 1890. He was the club captain and very versatile, playing as a back, half-back and forward on many occasions. He was also well respected within the club and community of Ardrossan. Alexander was born on 30 May 1866 at 52 Glasgow Street, Ardrossan. His parents were John Allan, a house painter and his wife, Catherine Crawford. He married Jessie Barclay in 1888 when he was a cabinet maker. Shortly afterwards, he became a painter and later a master painter. He and Jessie lived in Seton Street, Ardrossan and had six children, namely, Maggie, John, Catherine, Henry, Alexander and Andrew. On the occasion of his marriage, Alexander was presented with a timepiece set in a black marble case. The Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald of 4 January 1889 carried the report below.

On Friday evening last (28 December 1888), a number of the members and friends of the Ardrossan Ensign Football Club met in Mrs Wylie's for the purpose of presenting Mr Alexander Allan, captain of the club, with a handsome timepiece on the occasion of his marriage. Mr R Allison, who presided, referred to the many admirable qualities of Mr Allan on and off the football field. He had known him for many years and had always found him to be straightforward and honest. As a football player, he could be equalled by few and surpassed by none. He was always to be found in the centre of the fight, urging his men on to victory. Indeed, he might safely say he was the moving spirit of the Ensign Football Club and, although he was about to take unto him a 'better half', he hoped he would long continue to 'hunt the leather' on the grassy plain of Seafield Park. He concluded by asking Mr H McLean to make the presentation. In a few well-chosen remarks, Mr McLean like the chairman paid a high tribute to Mr Allan and hoped he would be long spared to hear the timepiece strike the hour. He would ask Mr Allan to accept the gift from the well wishers in the Ensign Football Club as a tangible token of their esteem and regard. Mr Allan, in his reply, said he found it very difficult to find what he had done to prompt such a handsome reward from the Ensign club. Many a hard battle he had fought in the past and he anticipated he would continue to fight them in the future. He had much pleasure in accepting the timepiece which would always remind him of the balmy days spent with the Ensign. Altogether, a pleasant evening was spent which was brought to a close with a vote of thanks to the chairman and the customary Auld Lang Syne. The timepiece is handsome and set in a black marble case. Beautifully gilded, it bears a plate with the inscription 'Presented to Mr Alexander Allan by the members and friends of Ardrossan Ensign Football Club on the occasion of his marriage, December 1888'.

On 26 December 1945, seven years after the death of his wife, Alexander died at 80 Eglinton Road, Ardrossan. This house is less than the length of three football pitches from Seafield Park where Alexander served his local football team with great commitment. He is buried in Ardrossan Cemetery. His gravestone is shown right.