theyflysohigh : Steve Marsh

Welcome to the Private memorabilia collection of 'theyflysohigh'

Insert body text here ...

Insert body text here ...

Banner Hammers
Logo theyflysohigh

Benefit & Testimonial ...

A testimonial match is a practice in some sports, notably football and especially in the United Kingdom, where a club puts on a match in honour of a player for service to the club.

By tradition, clubs typically grant testimonials to players upon reaching 10 years of service with a club, although they sometimes are given to players with less service as they approach retirement. These matches are always non-competitive. Typically, former greats for the club are invited to participate, either in the match itself or the surrounding festivities. For especially prominent players, some all-time greats of the game may be invited, or the opposition can be a national team. Alternatively, if a player is strongly identified with more than one club team, the testimonial may involve the player's current and past clubs. All proceeds from the match go to the player.

The practice started in the days when players, even those at top professional clubs, were paid far less than they are today. Few players were able to live on their club wages, much less save for retirement. The testimonial was a charitable gesture by the club; as testimonials were typically very well-attended matches, the practice of giving the players the proceeds from the match often enabled the honorees either to retire or establish themselves in another line of work once they finished playing.

In recent years, testimonials have been less frequent, especially in the top levels of European professional football and other sports in which the top players are able to make enormous salaries, many times the average wage. Today's top-level player often have far less need for the money from a testimonial than players from the past would have. Also, because of changes in the structure of the professional game, players are far less likely to stay with one club for an extended period of time than in past decades. Finally, many fans are disinclined to come to testimonials for top professionals, since they are often perceived as giving a huge windfall to a player who most likely does not need the money.

West Ham United Benefit games


West Ham United 2 - 4 Portsmouth

Western League  

14 December 1908

SLUG Memorabilia

Recognition of long and

loyal service from one of the

club’s all time greats

Please choose a Player to view

West Ham v. Glasgow Celtic

Upton Park’s First

Testimonial Match

Charlie's Night


West Ham United v. Queens Park Rangers

14 October 1912

07_12_14 WHU v. Portsmouth ALLISON
12_10_14 WHU v. QPR Robinson

Geoff Hallas’ & Brian Moore’s

Short West Ham Careers

After several thwarted comebacks, a persistent knee injury finally forced John Lyall into early retirement

The midfield dynamo's special day was against top Yugoslavian side Dinamo Zagreb

Billy Bonds received the extremely rare honour of being awarded not one, but two testimonial games!

After 12 seasons of first team

action Boyce was a worthy

recipient of a benefit game

West Ham supporters pay tribute to Ken Brown “king and jester at

Upton Park for 14 seasons

Ferguson's testimonial came two

days after the Hammers had

clinched the Second Division title

Wally St. Pier was awarded a testimonial after 45 years service

On and off the field he was a

shining example of loyalty

The benefit game turned out to be memorable in more ways than one

£5,000 signing from Southall, Devonshire played 448 competive first team games over 14 seasons

Parkes served West Ham during arguably the club’s most successful decade

'Stretch' was the recipient of two richly deserved testimonial games

Walker’s West Ham career stretched from 1932 to 1957

Smokey's testimonial was held two years after he had left the Hammers

Well deserved testimonial after

50 years of loyal service

Reliability and calmness made him an ideal captain

Posthumously awarded testimonial for a loyal

West Ham servant

An Upton Park thank you to 'Tonka' who contributed 12-years to the Hammers' cause

Heffer's playing career may have been curtailed but he continues to serve the Hammers

John Bond was on stand-by for England’s 1958 World Cup

in Sweden

Please note:

The benefit ticket was printed with the wrong year date of 1907 instead of 1908

West Ham United (Burton, Shea)













Pat Holland one of West Ham's Unsung Heros

Awarded in recognition of his early retirement

670 appearances plus and some crucial goals, Lampard was a worthy recipient of a testimonial

A poignant moment in the 1958-59 season for one of its star players.

Ernie Gregory
Bobby Moore Testimonial
Charlie Paynter
Hallas & Moore
John Lyall Testimonial
Geoff Pike
Billy Bonds
Ron Boyce
Ken Brown
Bobby Ferguson
Wally St Pier
Trevor Brooking Test
Julian Dicks
Alan Devonshire button
Phil Parkes
Alvin Martin
Dick Walker Testimonial
George Parris
Eddie Chapman
Steve Potts
Frank Piercy
Ray Stewart
Paul Heffer
John Bond
Pat Holland
Paul Hilton
Frank Lampard
Malcolm Allison