A-Z of West Ham United – Q is for…
We continue our alphabetic journey through 125 years of West Ham United history…
Queen Elizabeth II
West Ham United and Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II have developed many links down the years.
For starters, The Queen is reportedly a West Ham supporter, although this has never been officially or publicly confirmed.
However, the Hammers did receive a Royal seal of approval on 9 May 2002 as the Monarch opened the new Dr Martens Stand at the Boleyn Ground.
Her Majesty was accompanied by the late Duke of Edinburgh as the £25m, 15,000-capacity all-seater stand was officially opened with the unveiling of a plaque as part of The Queen’s four-day tour of London to mark her Golden Jubilee.
Then-Chairman Terence Brown welcomed the illustrious guests to Upton Park alongside representatives from the first team and Academy of Football, including manager Glenn Roeder and players Joe Cole and Jermain Defoe.
The Royal party were then invited inside for a Golden Jubilee Luncheon with Hammers officials and representatives from the London Boroughs of Newham, Barking & Dagenham, Bexley, Greenwich, Havering, Redbridge, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest.
The new Dr Martens Stand, which was sponsored by the well-known shoemakers, replaced the old West Stand, which had been built in 1925, and took the total capacity of the Boleyn Ground to 35,647 following the recently-completed construction of the North and South Stands.
The Club’s history was woven into the design with two turrets paying tribute to the ‘Boleyn Castle’, the name given to the former Green Street House, which stood on the site until it was demolished in 1955.
Alongside two tiers of seating, the new stand also included two tiers of executive boxes, which could be turned into hotel rooms on non-matchdays, offices, the Boardroom, dressing rooms, dugouts, media facilities and the club superstore.
At the time, it was the largest single football stand in London and its roof was clearly visible from the A13 Newham Way and A406 North Circular roads.
Later renamed for sponsors Alpari and Betway, the West Stand was demolished following West Ham United’s move to London Stadium in Stratford in 2016.
Of course, Her Majesty also presented Bobby Moore with the Jules Rimet Trophy following England’s FIFA World Cup win in 1966, while also presenting Moore, Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters with their winner’s medals.
All three men later visited Buckingham Palace to be honoured – Moore was made an OBE in 1967, Hurst made an OBE in 1979 and a Knight Bachelor in 1998, and Peters an MBE in 1978.
The trio’s FA Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup-winning manager Ron Greenwood was made a CBE in 1981.
Trevor Brooking was made an MBE in 1981, a CBE in 1999 and Knighted in 2004, while his long-time teammate and captain Billy Bonds was made an MBE in 1998, and Academy Director Tony Carr was made an MBE in 2010.
Other former Hammers to be honoured include Clyde Best, Teddy Sheringham, Stuart Pearce, David James, Frank Lampard Junior, Ian Wright and Jermain Defoe, all of whom have been made MBEs for their service to football and/or charity.
Queens Park Rangers
West Ham United have met west London club Queens Park Rangers on 117 occasions in the Hammers’ 125-year history.
Founded themselves in 1886 following a merger between local clubs St Jude’s and Christchurch Rangers, Queens Park Rangers took their name because many of their early players came from the Queen’s Park area of London.
Based in White City, QPR joined the Southern League in 1899 and faced Thames Ironworks FC for the first time on Christmas Day, winning 2-0 in front of 4,000 fans at Kensal Rise – one of nearly 20 grounds they have called home.
Rangers won the Southern League title in 1908 before being elected into the Football League in 1920, a year after their long-time non-league and war-time league rivals West Ham, joining the newly-formed Third Division.
After meeting in the FA Cup third round in January 1939, when Stan Foxall and Jackie Morton scored in a 2-1 West Ham win at Loftus Road, the clubs squared-off 12 times in regional football during the Second World War.
However, it would not be until 1948 that the pair would meet in the Football League, with Ken Wright’s goal not being enough to stave off a 2-1 Second Division defeat at Loftus Road in October of that year.
The first top-flight derby between the Irons and the Super Hoops was in November 1968 and was a real thriller, as the three World Cup winners and Harry Redknapp all scored in a 4-3 First Division win at the Boleyn Ground.
The two have met just ten times in the Premier League, with the most-recent ending 0-0 at Loftus Road in April 2015, with Adrian saving a penalty from Charlie Austin. Rangers were relegated the following month and the two London clubs have not met since in a competitive fixture.
However, Rangers did visit London Stadium for a friendly following the lockdown in June 2020.
Unsurprisingly, a succession of players have represented both clubs down the years, including Billy Yenson, Luděk Mikloško, Clive Allen, Tim Breacker, Les Ferdinand, Trevor Sinclair, Steve Lomas, Keith Rowland, Andy Impey, Anton Ferdinand, Nigel Quashie, Rufus Brevett, Iain Dowie, Bobby Zamora, Robert Green, Hogan Ephraim, Modibo Maïga, Ravel Morrison and Jordan Hugill.
West Ham also signed two players from Queens Park Rangers for Club-record fees within the space of 18 months – goalkeeper Phil Parkes for £565,000 in February 1979 and Paul Goddard for £800,000 in August 1980. Strangely, both men also each earned one England cap!
The quickest goal scored by a West Ham United player was netted by Ken Bainbridge, as the winger netted eleven seconds into the Hammers' 2-1 Division Two win over Barnsley at the Boleyn Ground on 29 August 1949.
Born in Barking, Bainbridge was signed from Leyton and went on to play 96 times, scoring 22 goals in total, before moving to reading in 1950.
Unsurprisingly, Bainbridge was blessed with great pace, but he was probably not as fast as Matthias Fanimo, the Academy of Football graduate who was dubbed the ‘World’s Quickest Footballer’ in 2014, when his GPS tracking system measured his top speed of 9.8 metres per second.
Now 27, Lambeth-born Fanimo made three first-team appearances in Claret and Blue, all as a substitute, between 2012-14. He played for four non-league clubs before moving to Slovenia in 2018. He is now with FK Sarajevo in Bosnia.