|In my early 20s I
used to spend some of my Saturday evenings at the
civic-hall dances in Wolverhampton. Occasionally, a few
of the Wolves players would attend, Billy Wright less
frequently as I believe he favoured home life. I remember
one night leaving early and as I handed in my cloakroom
ticket to reclaim my coat, I accidentally trod backwards
rather firmly onto someone's foot. My 'victim', I was
amazed to discover as I turned, was Billy Wright. After
his initial grimace of pain, however, as I apologised, he
just gave a cheerful grin. I remember hoping I hadn't
caused enough damage to keep him out of the team but at
the very next match, there was Billy, as spring-heeled as
ever, leaping to head high above his often-taller
My main memories of Billy's playing days were not only of the moments of brilliance but of the sheer quality and consistency of his play. The enthusiasm and obvious enjoyment of the game seemed to shine from the gold-shirted figure through many a murky Molineux afternoon.
Nowadays, every time I pass his statue outside Molineux, I glance up half-expecting to see the ever-present action which characterised his play only to be reminded that those memories are frozen in time forever.
JOHN LANSLEY Bridgnorth, Shropshire
As a kid growing up in Bilston, I remember my my Granddad often speaking fondly of Billy Wright, Stan Cullis and the great Wolves side, and I always wanted to meet him but I never got the chance. I feel that the present Wolves team owes it to the great side to get into the Premiership and become a shadow of this great team.
DAVID BLAKEMORE (17) Bilston
Billy Wright was my second cousin. My father's mother and his mother's mother were sisters. Although the links grew more tenuous over the years, as both families lived in Shropshire they were still relatively close and some of my cousins who continued to live in the area had closer links with Billy's side. He was not the first member of the wider family to play football professionally as my father, Ben Dabbs, who was his mother's cousin, played for Liverpool and Watford in the 1930's. He made both his reserve and first team debut for Liverpool at Molineux, so the ground had special memories for him given the later success that was to come Billy's way.
The family were keen Wolves supporters during Billy's time with the club and have continued to be so until the present day. I have his two books; Captain of England, and The World's my Football Pitch, both signed by him. He was truly a model player from an era when the rewards were not financial but rather in the spirit and pleasure of the game. Billy contributed a great deal to the game and it is only fitting that this should be recognised and remembered.
I first remember seeing Billy on TV in the early '70s, when he acted as a presenter on ATV's Sunday highlights programme, 'Star Soccer', and like many younger Wolves fans, my knowledge of his playing days comes form the old newsreels.
He must have been quite a player, to achieve so many caps for England at a time when selectors would vary the team for almost every match. To captain by example, as I've read he did, takes a rare charisma - a golden player, from a golden era in the history of Wolves. His statue at the entrance to Molineux acts as an abiding reminder of the man's pride, strength and dignity, and may it soon witness the return of top-class soccer to such an imposing, historic setting. It's unfortunate, to say the least, that neither Billy, nor his mentor Stan Cullis, ever received the knighthoods that their contributions to English football so richly deserved.
ANDY LOCKETT Tividale, West Midlands
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