“Incidentally one hears the ‘knowing’ ones around town repeating that dreary refrain that Torquay does not want promotion.”
I was probably aged twelve or thirteen when I first heard that and automatically assumed it was a fresh observation of my father’s.
I wonder when it was first uttered and how often it has been repeated?
I'm pretty sure it first came up in 1950 when John McNeil's team was top in mid-March before failing to win any of our last nine games - with McNeil leaving to take over at Bury "citing the apathetic response of the South Devon public and failing to see how United could hope to fulfill their ambitions on average home gates of 8,500".
We had never been anywhere near promotion prior to that.
The "Torquay does not want promotion" claims were certainly very loud in 1957 and in 1967 and 1968.