Cup passes to new trustee
PETER Egan described his call to permanently man the fort as "an honour".
The fort in question is the Wesley Hall Cup, made of pure Mt Morgan silver, which stands in a one-metre-high trophy cabinet at the Frenchville Sports Club.
Mr Egan has taken over Neville Coombs' role as a trustee of the prestigious cup after the latter's death earlier this year.
A symbol of supremacy, the cup is considered priceless by all local soccer circles and has been labelled as the "most prestigious amateur trophy in the world". It is even considered to be of greater worth than the premier accolade of the yachting world - The America's Cup.
Valued about $120,000, it comes out of the cabinet only on the premier soccer finals day and is guarded by two security staff at all times, said trust chairman Graeme Brady.
"The case is wrapped in blankets and transported to the game in a security van ... no one gets to hold the actual cup," he said.
"The last team to have lifted the trophy had poured beer into the cup and stained the inside an off-green."
The cup was donated by Wesley Hall, the first general manager of the Mt Morgan gold mine, and was believed to be made in England.
He took gold and silver from Mt Morgan and travelled to England to have the trophy made by leading silversmiths of the day.
The cup was first presented in June 1895 and has been an inspirational accolade for soccer teams in Rockhampton and Gladstone ever since, Mr Egan said.
During the war years, the cup was loaned to rugby union.
Mr Brady said gold chains which used to drape from the handles, and a set of gold wings on the cherub were torn off the trophy and have gone missing.
Mr Egan was privileged to be part of such a prominent trophy.
His passion for soccer started when he was a schoolboy with the Railway Recreation Soccer Club, now called Southside United.
The Holy Grail
- The Wesley Hall Cup is valued about $120,000
- Specialist cleaners have to be called in to clean the cup as it is very fragile
- Is considered to be the largest soccer cup in the world
- Wesley Hall was an experienced mine site manager who moved from England