For previous news articles see the monthly archive at the foot of this page.
Bell's Cup 31st May 2003
Commenting on the Challenge Cup draw which saw Queens paired with Stranraer, manager John Connolly said, "It's a local derby, it's away from home and as cup holders everyone will be out to beat us. Also Stranraer have a new manager so it all adds up to a really tough tie, however we'll be going to Stair Park confident that we can overcome this first hurdle and progress further in the competition.

However with us being drawn against Stranraer in the Challenge Cup we have now decided to withdraw from the Annan Tournament, it could mean playing them twice within the space of three weeks which I don't think would be a good thing. We'll now be looking to fix up another pre-season friendly match for that weekend."

Bill Goldie
News Round-Up 30th May 2003
Queens will commence the defence of the Bell's Cup with a local derby match against Stranraer at Stair Park. The tie will be played on Saturday August 2nd - the first game of the new season.

We're pleased to report that stopper Jim Thomson and 'keeper Colin Scott who underwent surgery for knee injuries earlier this week are recovering well. Both had been nursing their injuries during the latter part of the season but Jim Thomson had keyhole surgery to repair a torn cartilage while Colin had a cyst removed from behind his knee.

Joke of the week
Local printers Solway Offset won the match day mascot prize at this seasons Shirt Sponsorship Draw, however co-proprietor Malcolm Creedon categorically denied that Bruce Wright (Programme editor) will be their mascot for the day since the wee man flatly refuses to hold skipper Jim Thomson's hand when they run onto the park.

Bill Goldie
New Shirt Sponsor 29th May 2003
There was an excellent turnout for the seventh shirt sponsorship draw which was held in the lounge bar at Palmerston tonight and the club were again very happy with the response from the public and local business community with 135 names going into the drum.

The winners this year the local pharmacy, G R Blount of Dumfries and it was particularly fitting since Norman Blount was Chairman of the club for five and a half years and it was during his spell at the helm that the draw was first introduced, the full list of prize winners is as follows:
FIRST Shirt Sponsorship G R Blount Pharmacy
SECOND League Match Sponsorship Ian Gracie Specialist Contractors
THIRD Matchday Hospitality Package for six Dean of Dumfries
FOURTH Matchday Hospitality Package for four Paul Jones Hotel, Southerness
FIFTH Executive Club Membership Allied Davidson and Robertson, (Edinburgh)
SIXTH Executive Club Membership William Forsyth and Sons, (Sanquhar)
SEVENTH Executive Club Membership Dumfries Body Repair Centre
EIGHTH Autographed Match Ball Homer Burgess Limited
NINTH Autographed Team Shirt Oakbank Services
TENTH Match Mascot Solway Offset
The draw was made by Ian Scott the club's assistant manager, and his wife Lisa and afterwards club captain Jim Thomson presented Mrs Scott with a bouquet.

Speaking on behalf of the winners Mark Blount said, "You could say it was something of a seven year itch with us as we've been itching to win this for the past seven times. We've never won anything in the past so to take the top prize is just great. All our family are ardent Queen of the South supporters and we have close ties with the club and have provided them with medical supplies for several years.

I had a feeling that this time around we'd get lucky so I'm naturally delighted. We haven't decided what to put on the shirt yet but I'm sure we'll come up with something special.

Mark's father Norman was delighted when their name came out of the drum, "I'm just delighted for all of the family", said the ex-chairman, "It's been a while coming but well worth waiting for."

Speaking on behalf of Positive Response Communications (Last season's winners), the proprietors, Pat and Ian Hobson said it had been one of their best financial investments they'd ever made and wished the club every success for the future.

Bill Goldie
Pre-Season Friendly Arranged 29th May 2003
Another pre-season friendly has been arranged and will see Queens making a midweek trip down the M6 to face the locals of Penrith as we did in the first season of John Connolly's tenure. The date for the match is the 16th July.

Another club are in contact with John Connolly with a view to arranging a friendly at Palmerston on Wednesday 23rd July, more details to follow. Meanwhile it has been reported that Stranraer will be the fourth side at the Annan Tournament this season with Queens, Livingston and the home side making up the entrants.
Sandy Signs Up Again 28th May 2003
John Connolly moved in the transfer market today as he signed up a player he let go a couple of seasons back. Sandy Hodge, a favourite with the fans at Palmerston, put pen to paper today on a one-year deal. He joined Queens from Motherwell where he had been favoured as a striker but was converted to a left sided defender at Palmerston before moving on to Stranraer where he spent the last two seasons.
Player Moves 27th May 2003
Good luck to Brian McLaughlin who today signed up with St.Johnstone thereby renewing his acquaintance with fellow former Celt Billy Stark, also on the move was Gordon Burns who was at Palmerston for a short time last term before moving on to Peterhead, the Northern sides failure to gain promotion this season has meant that Gordon has been released by them.
Season Review - Pre-Season 24th May 2003
Time for the second part of our review of the season just completed, tonight Ewan concentrates on the pre-season. Click on the 'Season Review' photo-link on the right hand side of the page to read 'Part Two - Pre-Season'.
New Strips 21st May 2003
Here is a sneak preview of the new Nike strips that will be unveiled next week at the Shirt Sponsorship Draw.

Home Top

Away Top
There's still time to get your name in for the Shirt Sponsorship Draw - just contact Margaret or Ian Heuchan (Tel 01556 504569) to book your tickets - but remember to win it you must be in it!

Pictures courtesy Eric Moffat
Irish Opponents 20th May 2003
Queens could well face Irish opponents when they take part in the Annan tournament in July. It was expected that Kilmarnock would be joining Queens, Livingston and the home side club but the Rugby Park side are unable to make it this year so we believe Dungannon Swifts from County Tyrone in Northern Ireland who play in the first division of the Irish Football League have been approached to make up the foursome.
Friendlies 18th May 2003
Queens now have a fourth pre-season friendly arranged. On the 26th July we will travel to Dumbarton to take on the Sons, this makes the line-up so far, Annan Tournament, Morecambe and Dumbarton.

Rumours suggesting that we will play Carlisle United pre-season have been denied.
Back in the First 16th May 2003
Starting tonight and continuing over the summer months is our review of the season just past, with the title '2002/2003 Back in the First' we are sure that you will find it a riveting read as memories of cup finals and memorable victories are brought back into your mind.

As was the case last summer the review has been produced by our away day match reporter Ewan Lithgow so it is assured to be the most comprehensive account of the season that you could wish. Click on the 'Season Review' photo-link on the right hand side of the page to read 'Part One - Summer'.
Player News 16th May 2003
Eric Paton today signed on for another year at Palmerston in a move that will no doubt delight all Queens fans, also signed on a pre-contract (commencing 1st June) was John Dodds a 21 year old goalkeeper from Ayr United.
Nike for Queens 16th May 2003
Queens will be kitted out in top quality gear next season for yesterday they agreed a deal with sports giants Nike to supply their new strips. The home strip will be very similar to this past seasons but there is a change in the away tops, the blue and yellow theme has been retained but with yellow bodies and blue sleeves.

It is expected that the new gear will be on display at the shirt sponsorship draw on Wednesday 29th May

There's still time to get your name in for the shirt sponsorship draw - just contact Margaret or Ian Heuchan (Tel 01556 504569) to book your tickets - but remember to win it you must be in it!

Bill Goldie
Reserves Resurrected 16th May 2003
Queens have applied to have a team accepted in the South of Scotland league next season. This will be Queens reserve side consisting of most of this terms successful Under 18 squad with Paddy Atkinson, Gordon Hyslop and Fred Smith in charge. Paddy however will also be available for first team duty when required, they will take part in the league but only one competition - the Southern Counties Challenge Cup which they won last season.
'Keeper freed 16th May 2003
Young Stuart Robertson has now been released by the club and manager John Connolly is now searching for another 'keeper. However there is no truth in the rumour that Sandy Hodge will be returning to Palmerston.
Thommo in another final 15th May 2003
Andy Thomson is set to appear in another English Division Two play-off final after his side QPR made it to the final last night by beating Oldham Athletic. If history repeats itself then Thommo will start as a sub, come on in extra-time and score the winner and be regarded as a hero for ever by the winning sides fans, just as he did for Gillingham at Wembley a few years ago.

Fingers crossed for Thommo and a late winning goal.
Well Done Robbie 15th May 2003
Robbie Neilson has been offered a contract extension by Hearts boss Craig Levein this afternoon. All at Queens would like to congratulate Robbie who was an integral part in the first half of our first division campaign and who will always be remembered at Palmerston as one of the best right sided defenders that has graced the turf at Palmerston whether for the home side or the visitors.

Well done Robbie.
Web Team Thanks 14th May 2003
Whilst the end of the season signals a well earned rest for the players, there is another team at Palmerston who continue to work away as hard as ever. A massive thanks goes to all of the guys who help to make this website one of the best official sites in Scotland.
This season in particular has seen the news pages livelier than ever with Queens Press Officer Bill Goldie providing superb coverage of all team related matters including signing news, pre-match team news and superb post-match interviews.
Ewan Lithgow has continued to provide excellent away day match reports to ensure that every game is covered in detail. This close season, like last, Ewan has agreed to produce a 'Season Review' and the serialisation of this review will commence on Saturday evening.
Our 'Questions and Answers' page has again been a great success and the man with the stats is Club Historian and Museum Curator Ian Black who once again has answered all of your many and varied questions.
The man with the camera at away matches is David Gow and his exclusive video clips are well worth downloading and keeping safe somewhere, great to watch to get the atmosphere of the game as David shoots from the middle of the crowd.
Finally thanks to the others who help with the site in many different ways, Bruce Wright for ensuring we never miss a story, everyone at Palmerston for their total support for the site and last but by no means least the users of the site, keep coming back.

Remember that all the latest news will appear on this site as soon as it is confirmed, if it's not on here it hasn't happened.
Speculation 14th May 2003
Regarding the story carried in a national newspaper in the past couple of days speculating that Hamilton Accies midfielder Stuart Callaghan will be joining Queens. John Connolly admitted that he had enquired about the player last season but confirmed that he has had no further contact since then.
Bowser Wins another Award 12th May 2003
With the final scores from the final game on Saturday all now counted the recipient of this seasons Internet Fan Club Player of the Year award is Steve Bowey. Bowser follows in the footsteps of Warren Hawke, Peter Weatherson and Andy Aitken, all previous winners of the award.

Congratulations to Steve and thanks to everyone who voted, this season has seen in excess of twenty-two thousand individual votes cast, the most in a season so far.

For the record the winner of the Man of the Match award on Saturday was goal scorer Derek Lyle with youngsters Willie Gibson and Paul Burns taking the second and third places respectively. The full scores can be found via the 'Latest Report' link and the final standings on the Player of the Season league table can be seen on the 'Man of the Match' link.
O'Neill Signs for Saints 12th May 2003
We learn today from the St.Mirren website that they have, as widely speculated, signed former Queens midfielder John O'Neill on a two-year contract. John signed up at Palmerston in January 2001 when he made a substitute appearance as a trialist in the Ne'er day defeat by Stranraer at Palmerston. In all John made ninety-four appearances, including substitutes and scored an impressive total of forty-five goals, he was also voted IFC Man of the Match ten times.

We're sure that all Queens fans will wish John well for the future, for all but four games of course.
St.Johnstone 0-1 Queens - Reaction 10th May 2003
After the match John Connolly was full of praise for players and fans alike, said the manager, "We kicked-off with eight players under twenty four in our line up and the team performed absolutely marvellously in difficult playing conditions.

Colin Scott called off just prior to the match and we lost big Sean at half-time with a head knock which makes our victory even better for it's never easy to win up at Perth. We played our two under 18 lads, Willie Gibson and Paul Burns from the start and they were both magnificent, and bear in mind Paul was up against Paul Hartley for most of the match.

We've had a great season and the players have given me 110% and I can't give them any more accolade than that and once again thanks to the fans, you were tremendous once again.

Finishing fifth in the table has exceeded our expectations, but success brings its own problems for fans being fans, they will be looking for us to improve on that next season which makes it increasingly difficult."

Bill Goldie
Player News 10th May 2003
Derek Allan has now signed his new contract whilst Ben Dawson has been released. Further news this evening is that Queens will again take part in the very successful Annan Tournament and will also take on Morecambe in the seaside town on the 19th July.
Derisory Offer 9th May 2003
Re: the story in today's Sun about Partick Thistle's 10,000 bid for Peter Weatherson. John Connolly dismissed it as a "derisory offer" which was turned down immediately.
Andy's off to Samba land 9th May 2003
Off to 'Samba land' next month is Andy Goram. 'The Goalie' sets off for Brazil on the 16th June and all at Palmerston will wish him well.

Said Andy, "I was approached by a Brazilian football official at a recent Gala Day in Selkirk who put a tempting proposition to me . I might be playing, I might be coaching or I might even be doing both. I'm not sure yet. I don't want to name the club at present for nothing's been signed, but they do play in the top league."

"I really enjoyed my spell with Queens and was very sorry when I was released but I did manage to squeeze in my 750th competitive game while at Palmerston. They're a great bunch of lads there and although it will be difficult again next season I'm sure they'll stay up in the first division. They look like losing a few experienced players at the end of the season, however they do have some very promising youngsters coming through. I wish Queens well especially Colin Scott, my goalkeeping mate, he's a great lad and I know he'll do a good job for the club and not let them down."

Bill Goldie
QOS Fan Club News 8th May 2003
The members of the Queen of the South Fan Club have voted for Steven Bowey as the Player of the Year for 2002/03 season and the youth coaches have chosen Steven Mackay as the Young Player of the Year.

The Fan Club are also delighted to have handed over a cheque to the Club for 1,500 this season for the youth development sides.

As an additional note here is a summary of who has won what this term:

Doonhamer Travel Club Player of the Year - Steve Bowey
Doonhamer Travel Club Young Player of the Year - Brian McColligan
Away Day Player of the Year - Steve Bowey
Globe Inn(Howff) Player of the Year - Steve Bowey
Goal of the Season - Steve Bowey (St.Mirren - Bell's Cup semi)
Queen of the South Fan Club Player of the Year - Steve Bowey
Queen of the South Fan Club Young Player of the Year - Steven Mackay

And finally the Internet Fan Club Player of the Season award - still a game to go so you'll have to wait until Monday evening!
Team News 8th May 2003
Queens must have one of their youngest squads ever for the final game of the season against St.Johnstone at Perth on Saturday. Added to the three lads, Willie Gibson, Paul Burns and 'keeper Stuart Robertson, who have featured of late are Steven Archibald, Steven McKay and Sean Ferrie. Out however is 'Player of the Year' Steve Bowey, who is suspended. Brian McLaughlin is in the pool but Derek Allan and John O'Neill won't feature.

Bill Goldie
Re-signing News 7th May 2003
It's now almost certain that Brian McLaughlin and John O'Neill will be leaving the club. Tonight Brian informed the manager that he was talking to another club with a view to signing while John O'Neill failed to turn-up for further contract talks which makes it look as if he too will be moving on.

Said John Connolly, "We've done all we can to get Brian and John to re-sign, they've both been offered good contracts but obviously not good enough for them, however we are now much clearer where we stand concerning players.

We are still talking to Eric Paton and are hopeful we can persuade him to sign on again while Sean O'Connor has been retained."

Bill Goldie
Man of the Match 5th May 2003
Goalkeeper Colin Scott produced another outstanding display on Saturday and won the Internet Fan Club Man of the Match award, second place went to Steve Bowey in his last appearance of the season and third to goalscorer Sean O'Connor.

All of the scoring can be seen on the 'Latest Report' page and the Player of the Season league table has also been updated and can be found on the 'Man of the Match' page.
JT Available 5th May 2003
Jim Thomson will now be available for Saturday's match against St.Johnstone for his operation on his knee has been postponed until May 26th.

Missing however will be Travel Club Player of the Season Steve Bowey who is suspended.
Bowser says Thanks 4th May 2003
In an exclusive interview for the website a joyous and somewhat emotional Steve Bowey spoke of his love for Queen of the South, his affinity with the Queens fans and heaped praise on his team-mates.

"Queens are the best club I've been with and moving from Gateshead to Palmerston was the best move I've ever made" he confessed. "Although I've travelled thousands of miles in the past 15 months it's all been well worth while for we've won a league championship and the Challenge Cup".

On the fans he says "I find it difficult to find words to describe them, particularly those who travel to the away games. They're unbelievable, superb, magnificent and when I hear them chant 'Bowser's gonna get you' it gives me such a lift I could run through a brick wall".

He admitted lifting three awards was a great honour but dedicated them to his team-mates. "Let's not forget football's a team game, not an individual sport and it's been a tremendous all-round effort this season. If it wasn't for my fellow players I wouldn't be standing here tonight with these trophies"

Several games brought back happy memories to him this past season. Apart from the Challenge Cup final, which was a glamour day out three others sprang to mind--the Challenge Cup tie up at Paisley when we beat St Mirren 5-3. "We played our best football of the season that night and all five goals were brilliant" he recalls."The cup tie against Aberdeen was another memorable match.We had a crowd of about 6000 and the atmosphere was electric and we came very close to beating a Premier League side which is all part of the magic of Scottish Cup football. The 2-1 victory over Falkirk was a good one as well. They were the league leaders and we came back from a goal down to win and that was against a side who had thumped us twice at Brockville".

"If we win next Saturday we'll probably finish in 5th spot in the table which is an excellent achievement for a part-time club. And finally I'd just like to say a big thank-you to the Doonhamer Travel Club for a great night and also to all those fans out there who voted for me"

Bill Goldie

Bowser receives his award last night

Photograph Courtesy of 'The Duke' -
JT to miss out 4th May 2003
It has been confirmed that Jim Thomson will miss next Saturday's match. The Queens skipper is being admitted to hospital for 'keyhole surgery' on a knee ligament. We wish big J.T. all the best and a speedy recovery. Andy Aitken, our only 'ever-present' this season is favourite to take over the captaincy for the day.

Bill Goldie
Player of the Year Awards - Globe Inn, High Street 3rd May 2003
Steve Bowey was the recipient of another player of the year award from the Doonhamers Globe Inn (High Street) Howff Club.

He received two beautiful ceramic dishes filled with whisky and these were presented by the club secretary Bruce Wright in the players lounge following the Ross County game.
Player of the Year Awards - Travel Club 3rd May 2003
The Doonhamers Travel Club annual awards night was held at the Abbey Inn, Lincluden tonight, the main Player of the Season award went to the dynamic Steve Bowey: runner-up was skipper Jim Thomson and in third spot was Andy Aitken, our only ever-present player.

Other winners were:

Young Player of the Year
First - Brian McColligan
Second - Peter Weatherson
Third - Andy Aitken

Away Day Player of the Year
First - Steve Bowey
Second - Peter Weatherson
Third - Jim Thomson

Goal of the Season
First - Steve Bowey - versus St.Mirren, Bell's Cup semi-final
Second - Peter Weatherson - versus Alloa Athletic, away 3-3 draw
Third - Peter Weatherson - versus Ayr United, home 1-1 draw on Ne'er day

Novelty awards

Rear of the Year award:
First - Andy Aitken
Second - Eric Paton
Third - John O'Neill

and finally the Lunch Box of the Year award went to 'The Goalie' himself Andy Goram.

Hostess for the evening was Cornets Lass Pamela Davers and the trophies were again sponsored by the Globe Inn, Market Square, Dumfries.

Manager John Connolly gave the vote of thanks on behalf of the players and the staff at the club.

Login tomorrow evening for an exclusive interview with Bowser.
Old Trafford Invite 3rd May 2003
Physio Kenny Crichton and Club Doctor Archie Downie have been invited down to Manchester United in pre-season to view the medical facilities, take in some training sessions and hopefully watch a match. Naturally both are excited and looking forward to the trip to Old Trafford.
Long Distance Fans 3rd May 2003
Three avid Queens fans at Palmerston for Saturday's match were Dean Hoskins, Jim Hall and Alan Hancox from the 'Shrewsbury Branch' of the Queen of the South Supporters club. The trio enjoyed a quick tour of the ground, had photos taken in the Trophy Room and also with Dougie the Doonhamer and Queens popular midfield dynamo Steve Bowey.

It was Alan's first visit to Palmerston but Dean and Jim are seasoned campaigners having travelled up many times in the past two years. Both have been present at about half of the home games this season and actually made the 960 mile round trip north to see Queens play Inverness CT last month.

They all enjoyed the game and intimated they would be sponsoring a player next season -Well done lads!

Dean, Jim and Alan meet up with Steve Bowey before the match
Queens 1-0 Ross County - Reaction 3rd May 2003
Said John Connolly after the match, "It was a good end-to-end game and entertaining for the spectators, for the past few weeks we've had nothing to play for except getting as many points on the board as possible and finishing as high up the table as possible and it's sometimes hard to motivate players in a position like that.

We played well last week against Clyde and we tried to keep that attitude and momentum going out there today which is only fair to the fans.

Ross County had all to play for and were in a totally different predicament to us but over the ninety minutes I think we deserved our victory.

Terry Christie and Alex Smith will have an anxious week in front of them - I wish them both luck but don't envy them.

That's us above Ayr again on goal difference and I'd like to think we can retain fifth spot next week to end up in the top half of the table."

Alex Smith was naturally disappointed but stressed that if his side beat Ayr at Dingwall next Saturday they'll stay up, "So our fate is in our own hands", he stresses, "Queens had the better of the first half ", said Alex, "and we had a few let-offs before they scored their goal, but we played a lot better in the second period and it was only some excellent saves by Colin Scott that denied us a goal.

Queens' two front men caused us a few problems but to be honest Dumfries is never an easy place to come and pick-up points."

Bill Goldie

[Back to Queens front page]