Sydney Bourne

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Sydney Bourne (c. 1857- 1930[1]) was the first chairman of Crystal Palace F.C..

Sydney Bourne was a local football enthusiast who joined the board of Crystal Palace at the invitation of Edmund Goodman. Goodman had stumbled upon Bourne's name after searching the records of FA Cup Final ticket sales. Noting that Bourne was a regular purchaser of tickets, he approached Bourne regarding the idea of a new club playing at the cup final venue. The Football League had frowned upon the idea of the owners of the Cup Final venue also owning a football team, so a separate company was being set up to found the new club, Crystal Palace. Bourne was very agreeable to the idea and joined the board of directors, being elected chairman at the club's first ever meeting.[2]

In 1909 Bourne was quoted in the press on the idea circulating at the time of the football players forming a trade union. Bourne wished to place a Director's view of the idea on the public record, and noted: "nine out of ... ten clubs ... in England are ... insolvent, and are only kept alive by the personal sacrifices of their directors. If trade unionism is going to step in and interfere in every petty dispute there is not a director who will risk another shilling ... for the sport. (A)ny federation of players must work with their employers, and not against them."[3] Bourne also oversaw the purchase of the land for and the building of the club's stadium, Selhurst Park.[4]


  1. ^ "Index entry". FreeBMD. ONS. Retrieved June 28, 2013. 
  2. ^ King, Ian (2012). Crystal Palace: The Complete Record 1905-2011. Derby Books Publishing Company Limited. pp. 8–9. ISBN 978-1-78091-221-9. 
  3. ^ "Attitude of Players". The Glasgow Herald. 31 August 1909. p. 11. Retrieved 27 June 2013. 
  4. ^ Inglis, Simon (2004). Engineering Archie: Archibald Leitch - football ground designer. English Heritage.