It is with great sadness that we report that Arthur Wenborn passed away over the Christmas period. Arthur was Hornchurch manager for 459 games from October 1972 to May 1978 and from July 1987 to April 1990. He also made 14 appearances as a player for Hornchurch.
ARTHUR WENBORN – PLAYER
Arthur played for Hornchurch from 1961-62 to 1963-64, and made his debut at Hounslow in March 1962. He played fourteen times, scoring one goal, over the next two seasons.
He played a further eight times during his spells as manager.
His final playing appearance was at Chesham Utd, when he came on as substitute in an F.A. Cup match, which Hornchurch lost 2-0.
ARTHUR WENBORN – MANAGER
After leaving Hornchurch, Arthur became player-manager at Ford Utd, returning to Hornchurch as manager in October 1972.
Arthur Wenborn became manager of Hornchurch FC in October 1972, under very difficult circumstances. The club was in crisis in September 1972 when there was a players and management walk out, over payment of expenses and other issues. All fourteen first team players left and manager Jimmy Quail resigned, along with vice-chairman Reg Lambourne.
Terry Bishop, manager of the Romford & District League team, took over as caretaker manager. In the FA Cup match against Walthamstow Avenue, which they lost 8-0, they fielded their Romford & District League team, and every player was making their debut appearance. This was followed by a 2-0 Amateur Cup exit at Chingford, where the team again consisted largely of reserve players.
Arthur Wenborn was appointed manager in October, and he played in his first match in charge, when a completely different line up lost 2-0 at home to Tilbury. In just three first team matches, Hornchurch fielded 34 different players.
He remained manager until the end of the 1977-78 season, taking charge of a total of 310 matches, before becoming manager of Witham Town.
Arthur returned as manager the summer of 1987 and for the next two seasons he was joint manager with Brian McFadyen – 100 matches in total.
Season 1988-89 was better known for what happened off the field, when, in March 1989 the club was seriously affected financially when the clubhouse was burned down in an arson attack. For nine months there was no income from the bar, until eventually the clubhouse was re-opened in December 1989. The actual financial cost of the fire only became apparent in September 1990, when, in a letter from Havering Council, the Borough Architect provided a valuation of £55,000 in respect of the rebuilding of the new clubhouse.
The financial situation was so bad that chairman Jim Bradshaw decided that there was no alternative other than to resign from the Isthmian League and drop down into the Essex Senior League. But Arthur, the players and the rest of the managerial staff rallied round and persuaded him to change his mind.
In 1989-90, Arthur was the sole manager, for another 49 matches. His final match in charge was on the 28th April 1990, when Hornchurch lost 4-3 at home to Royston Town.
Arthur was in charge for a total of 459 matches.
After leaving Hornchurch, he became manager of Harwich & Parkeston, and his final club was Barking FC, in 2002.