Mystery of 1973 Sunderland cup-winning tea towel cleaned up, 49 years on

A 49-year mystery may finally have ended – and it’s all to do with a Sunderland tea towel.

Tuesday, 7th June 2022, 1:04 pm

Sign up to our Wearside Echoes Newsletters. A monthly round-up of our retro best bits

It was just last month when the Sunderland Echo revealed the story of 95-year-old Ron Winter who had a tea towel from 1973 depicting Sunderland’s famous FA Cup Final triumph.

The answer may well have been provided by fellow Black Cats fan David Brown who remembers the same tea towel in his mam’s house – and thinks it all stems from a manufacturers in Ireland.

The 1973 Sunderland tea towel saga may be over.

Sign up to our Wearside Echoes Newsletters. A monthly round-up of our retro best bits

David, who now lives in Canada, said: “In 1973 I was living with my parents on Southwick Road, and watched the final on TV. Not long after the game the tea towels were sent to my mom by a family member, her cousin as I recall.

“He worked as a sales rep for a linen company based in Belfast, and as a die hard Sunderland supporter he often travelled to the area and occasionally passed on linen samples to my mom."

The piece of memorabilia has the Sunderland badge on it as well as the words ‘FA Cup winners 1973. Played Wembley 5th May, Sunderland 1 Leeds 0”

“The tea towel hung on my bedroom wall until we eventually moved to Fulwell,” said David. “I left the North East and moved to London in 1981, and from that point I have no recollection of seeing the tea towel.

The 1973 FA Cup parade in Sunderland.

"I moved to Canada in 1990, and after my mom passed away in 2004, the contents of the house in Rockville were mostly donated. The fate of the tea towel is unknown.”

The tea towel, David believes, may have come from the Irish Linen Company and we thank him for getting in touch.

Thanks also go to Ron who originally contacted us in May and shared some great SAFC memories.

The 95-year-old watched the Black Cats parade the FA Cup in 1973.

The 1937 FA Cup parade which Ron Winter watched.

In 1937, his dad put him on the window ledge of the Londonderry pub so he could watch the Cup come home – and he saw Raich Carter holding it.

Ron even watched Denis Law playing for Huddersfield in a juniors match against Sunderland,

Ron, now of Durham, has been a Sunderland stalwart for as long as he can remember.

"I have got two daughters and I used to take them and my neighbours sons to Roker Park,” he previously told the Echo.

The tea towel at the centre of the mystery.

"And I used to watch the juniors at Hendon police ground. I saw Denis Law make his first appearance for Huddersfield juniors.

"I was born and lived in Deptford and had a season ticket years ago.”

The former Bede Grammar student worked in the Civil Service, later joined the Land Commission and ended his working life at National Savings in Durham before retiring in 1986.”

He watched the 73 FA Cup parade from near the Ramside Hall Hotel and remembers sitting on the window ledge of the Londonderry for the 1937 FA Cup homecoming parade.

Do you have a Sunderland memory you would like to share with us? Would you like Echo readers to help shed light on your questions to do with Wearside’s past?

Email [email protected] to tell us more.

Read More

Read More
How the streets of Sunderland looked 50 years ago - a look back to John Street, ...