October 6 - 1924 All Blacks at Wembley

The 1924/5 All Blacks rearranged their schedule to take in the British Empire Exhibition at Wembley. It meant a crowded and long day for the team, as this excerpt from the tour book shows.

As the Exhibition would have been closed before our official visit to London, Mr. Dean arranged for a special trip on Monday, October 6th. We left Leicester at 9.20 a.m.. and arrived at Wembley Station two hours later. We proceeded immediately to “New Zealand’’ before joining the New Zealand Wembley authorities at a luncheon given in our honour Those present were :—Col. A. F. Roberts. O.B.E. (Commander of New Zealand Court), who presided. Sir James Allen (High Commissioner for New Zealand), Sir Arthur Myers (late Minister of Finance for New Zealand), the Duke of Devonshire, Mr. D. Hoare (Secretary New Zealand Court), the Rev. Mollineaux. Captain of the British Rugby Team that toured Australia in 1898 and many others. During the afternoon we visited ‘‘Canada,’’ “India,” ‘‘Australia,’’ ‘‘South Africa,’’ and the Amusement Park. Time was too short to make a very thorough inspection, but of what I saw, I considered “Canada” was the best. The display of wool, butter, and frozen meat in “New Zealand” was also very good. We saw the huge stadium where about 120,000 people can be accommodated. We left Wembley at 7.30 p.m., and upon our arrival in London we were conveyed to Euston Station via Oxford street, Regent street, Piccadilly, Haymarket, Pall Mall, Trafalgar Square, thence to the station where we left for Birmingham at 9.15 p.m., and reached our destination at midnight. Our first glimpse of London was spoilt owing to rain, which made the streets look dreary. The absence of verandahs seemed very strange.

From “With the All Blacks in Great Britain, France, Canada and Australia 1924-25” by Read Masters. Pub. 1928 by Christchurch Press Co. Ltd p.40.

Read Masters