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Thank You and Farewell

Ken Ramsden started working for Manchester United as a 15-year-old office boy. Over the next 50 years he worked his way up through the ranks at the club, moving up to ticket office manager, programme editor, press officer, assistant secretary all the way up to club secretary.

He got the job two years after the Munich Air Disaster, so was a part of the club as it started rebuilt and the next great team was formed.

The disaster had an impact on all those who were living in Manchester and Ken felt it like anyone else. His family were very much involved with the club and his mum having to cope with the devastation at Old Trafford following Munich.

“All the coffins came back from Munich and they turned the gym at Old Trafford into a mortuary,” said Ramsden on the 50th anniversary in 2008. “One week my mum and auntie were washing the players’ shirts, the next they were polishing their coffins. It’s hard to imagine that now, but to them it was life. You just got on with it, there was no option. You couldn’t opt out just because you were too upset. My mum and auntie were like foster mums to the boys because a lot lived in digs.”

Ramsden also reflected on what effect Munich had on United.

“I suppose Munich made the club unique,” he continued. “It made it different from every other club. It maybe gave it a sense of its own destiny, something that was very important to United and that was a legacy to the boys who died.”

He had started off in the United family because of his mother and auntie who were laundry ladies at Old Trafford and he lived on the same road as club secretary Les Olive.

“One of the first things Les Olive ever said to me was, ‘Don’t ever let me hear you say that is not my job because whatever you are asked to do is your job’. It was a good lesson.”

There aren’t many men who claim to work with the people he has. In his early days, Ramsden worked on the pay-roll, sorting out the wages for the likes of George Best, Bobby Charlton and Denis Law. He has worked for Sir Alex Ferguson and Sir Matt Busby and speaks fondly of them both.

“Fergie and Busby are both very humble men,” he said. “I really, really think that United is a humble club. I know there are those outside who think there is an arrogance about the club but I truly don’t think that is the case.”

After 50 years with United, Ken has now retired. We wish him all the best.

——–
50 years and out
Cuppa with Ken Ramsden
Ken Ramsden – My Old Trafford

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About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

View all posts by Scott »

 

31 Comments

  1. Costas says:

    Nothing lasts forever unfortunately. All the best for Ken. Was he our longest serving employee?

  2. Gotta hate tiny tears says:

    Scott
    0ne 0f the most classy post youve ever wrote.

  3. Red phil says:

    As far as life time jobs go, I think he wins!

  4. Trevor says:

    Lads,

    I have just herd a little roumour about our little friend Stevie Kunt!

    Apparently he has got his Wifes sister pregnant, There is a court issued 2 week gagging order on this story! The unrest in the England camp was due to this as John Terry was upset thtat Stevie Kunt still kept the arm band!

    The England Camp where devided on 2 sides! with Terry and Stevie Kunt hating the sight of each other!

  5. King Eric says:

    All the best Ken. THIS is why United are the great club they are. A real family feel to it without me sounding cliched.

  6. giggs11gerrard0 says:

    Scott – What a post after seeing all the usual drivel around the media regarding transfers etc. Ken is a legend within the club and wish him all the best for his retirement. He is part of the fabric through the bad times and then the good. Not many people can say they have seen it all in football but I am sure Ken can say he has.

  7. Corea says:

    All the best.

  8. parryheid says:

    I know United are a family oriented club,Three generations proves it .Incredible and very pleasing enjoy your retirement Ken.

  9. boam6 says:

    @Trevor

    I heard that rumour aswell of a mate who’s a liverpool fan shows how classless some players are there at a world cup for fuck sake plus gerrard don’t sleep with a team mates ex terrys a cunt anyway

    @scott

    Great post again i wish some of the players could sometimes show the commitment that people like ken, sir alex, g nev ( the list goes on ) how much they show for the club that we all hold close to our hearts !

  10. MG says:

    Thanks for the post Scott

  11. Red Devil says:

    All the best Mr. Ramsden….Have a good life..

  12. Snoopy says:

    Thank you, Ken Ramsden!
    Thanks for your hard work!

  13. Doghouse says:

    That’s a dream career that is. I hope he enjoyed it and I hope he enjoys retirement.

  14. loughie21 says:

    Too often we forget great servants like Ken Ramsden. He has done so much for the club and never demanded spotlight or recognition and I hope he enjoys his retirement with a lifetime invitation to every game and function United have. Thank you Ken, and great post Scott

  15. Welbz19 says:

    Great post Scott! These are the people that make United!

  16. dela says:

    What a career! And what a man! Thank you for everything Ken.

    Brilliant post, Scott. The men behind the scenes are almost always forgotten. It is heartening to see that some of them are finally getting the recognition they deserve.

  17. theboogeyman says:

    All the best Ken!

  18. Gotta hate tiny tears says:

    Managing Liverpool is “the biggest job in club football” 7th in the league, haven’t won the league in 21 years by the end of this comingseason but somehow ” the biggest job in club football ” do they just give there managers dumb dumb juice when they walk in the door

  19. Fze123 says:

    50 years at Utd, that’s pretty impressive. Thanks for everything Ken, wish you all the best in the future.

  20. mattbw7 says:

    re the gerrard rumours, this post is not the place for it, we are supposed to be saying thanks to a loyal servant of the club.

    On gerrard apparently his wife doesn’t have a sister!!!

  21. Sir Ryan Giggs says:

    Thanks you Mr Ramsden. Have a good life.

  22. urval87 says:

    Thank you very much for your loyal service to our beloved club….

  23. Ash says:

    Thank you sir ramsden.All the best for your future.

  24. kel says:

    Emotional. Really. Put more infos of him and pictures to let us know more about him!

  25. james f says:

    What a job! And what a life! This man is a true legend.

  26. Ubibi Godwin Jr says:

    What more can I say?Wishing ken ramsden the very best of retirement,he has been with this club through the thick and thin.This goes to show that man utd is the most tradition team in the world,its more like a family thing in united.He has seen it all,best of retirement anyway and I think he deserves to be present to the fans at old trafford for one last good bye.

  27. ZuluMalta says:

    A big thank you Mr Ramsden from ALL Man Utd fans from Malta !!!

  28. RedScot says:

    Fabulous read, thanks.
    Changed days me thinks regards loyalty and sticking with it to improve and grow.
    The more I read and understand its the Manchester united family.
    Like the lesson given to Mr Ramsden from Mr les Olive! that would serve you well in any walk of life.
    Happy retirement Sir and shout our team on to there 19 th next season.

  29. Dilardo says:

    What he must’ve seen and heard. Most Reds would swap their careers to have had Ken Ramsden’s. All the best to him.

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