Football Without Fans – St Patrick’s CSC, Shotts

St Patrick’s CSC, Shotts…

On 28 April 1946 an inaugural meeting was held in CYMS/Columbia Hall in Shotts, and the following office bearers were elected to begin and shape what is still a thriving CSC. Willie Ward as president, Matt Timmons as vice president, James McMahon as secretary, Pat Kane as treasurer, and Teddy Allison as minute secretary. Other committee members elected were J. Kerr, Peter Hughes, Frank Flynn, James McCarron, and Dick Sweeney.

Others in attendance at the historic meeting were Mr. Gallon from the Craigneuk Branch, Mr. Glass, who was the social convenor for the CSA, and Mr. M. Carroll, who was the national secretary. Mr. Carroll spoke of the advantages of the Association and then proposed the defining motion, ‘That a branch be formed in Shotts.’ Reputable research indicates that Shotts CSC, when formed, was at the forefront and in some position of influence within the CSA.

The club’s devotion to supporting Celtic through good times, record-breaking times, and not-so good times has never been in question. They are based in the outpost of North Lanarkshire, which has always had a strong link with Celtic and, to date, has been acknowledged as the 10th oldest surviving CSC in the world.

The Shotts Branch, (Shotts St Patrick’s since 1996) was founded to enable the like-minded, hard-working mining community to travel to Paradise in an affordable and community-based group. Charity and community events date back as far as the 1947–48 season, with various reports of a benefit match for Mr. Michael Woods, a Shotts miner injured and blinded in an accident in the Shotts colliery, with Celtic sending a team to play in an exhibition game.

When the demographics of the membership allowed for it, there was an annual charity football match for the Frankie Connor Memorial Trophy, with the initial match raising £5,000 for St Andrew’s Hospice. Various other local charities and groups received donations raised from the other matches over the next few years. While nobody involved played like a Lisbon Lion, everyone involved celebrated like a Lisbon Lion. Today, the club still supports local groups and charities and proudly sponsors a class in the annual St Patrick’s Picnic Group trip.

Shotts CSC has been involved in travel to away matches throughout the years. In 1946, the minutes of an eagerly anticipated away trip to Dumfries against Queen of the South, note that Mr. Watters had been given permission to acquire an accordionist for the trip.

The club had the blessing of the then Parish priest, Fr. Cornelius O’Leary, to bear the name of Shotts St Patrick’s CSC to reinvigorate the club with the St Patrick’s community. A record of past presidents includes Willie Ward 1946–1948, James Muldownie 1948–1950, Hume McNair 1950–1954, Frank Norton 1954–1970, Crawford Fallon 1970–1989, Alex Fallon and Tommy Murphy 1989-1993, Alex Murphy 1993-1995, Tony Lee 1995-2000, Dom Murphy 2000-2003, Frankie Connor Jr. 2003-2005, Barry Quigley 2005-2006, Brian Murphy 2005-2006, Elaine Rice 2009-2018, Aidan Conlon 2018-2019, no nominated president 2019-2022, and Aiden Conlon 2022-present.

Over the years, there have been numerous characters, but it would be remiss not to mention a lady called Mary Mullen, who has been attending Celtic matches both home and away for almost as long as the club has been going.

Celtic’s Tommy Burns. Photo: Mark Leech / Offside.

Mary attended with her close friend, Isa Connell, for countless years until Isa was sadly no longer able to attend due to health reasons. In recognition of Mary and Isa’s relentless support of Celtic, the club made them honorary members in May 2000. Mary was an avid supporter of Tommy Burns, and during Tommy’s playing days, she would be seen with her green and white knitted jumper with Burns knitted into the jumper.

St Patrick’s CSC, Shotts over at

Mary was amazed during the annual supporters dance when none other than Tommy Burns himself congratulated her on becoming an honorary member of the supporters club. It is reported that there wasn’t a dry eye in the house due to the look of delight on Mary’s face when Mr. Burns insisted on dancing with her.

The Station Hotel and the Brandy Bar have provided pick-up and drop-off points for the CSC throughout the years, and rumour has it that some members may have had a refreshment or two in these tremendous establishments.

They have regular player of the year evenings in venues ranging from the ‘old’ Shotts Cooperative Hall in the 1960s to the Number 7 Lounge at Paradise and the more regularly frequented St Patrick’s Parish Centre Shotts. Erik Sviatchenko joined the club members in a recent player of the year event with the SPFL Trophy and the European Cup.

As with all supporters clubs, there have been good times and lean times, and the wider Celtic family helped throughout these times. They would like to thank Newmains CSC, Airdrie CSC, and Cleland CSC, who helped through the difficult periods with transport sharing and their support at club fundraising and charity events.

They would also like to thank James Campbell, who researched and documented the history of the club for their 60th anniversary programme. This programme has allowed the current members and members of the future to understand the tradition and values of their club.

David McIntyre –

An extract from Football Without Fans – The History of Celtic Supporters Clubs by David McIntyre ( Celtic Bars). Football Without Fans – The History of Celtic Supporters Clubs is out now and available in print and kindle versions HERE.

More from Football Without Fans tomorrow on The Celtic Star, the Celtic supporters website. Will it be your CSC that’s featured?

Just before Christmas, David McIntyre from Celtic Bars was interviewed by Celtic TV about his Football Without Fans book. Here’s the video on Celtic TV’s You Tube channel . You can order a copy in print or kindle from Amazon regardless of where you are in the world. Order your copy HERE.


About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email

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