HISTORY

1976 - Present: 

Joe Gilroy took over at the start of the 1976/77 season, with a full league programme of 39 games. His first season saw Queen's finish 5th, but the following season the team was in mid table, and in April 1979 Gilroy stood down due to business commitments. Appointed in his place was player Eddie Hunter, who was to become a pivotal figure around the club for the next 15 years.

From a position of 13th out of 14 teams when he took over, Eddie Hunter finished 1979/80 with his team in 5th place, and the following season he led the team to its first silverware for 25 years. The first season in division one finished in a comfortable eighth place, but the likes of John McGregor leaving for Liverpool at the end of that season meant that 82/83 was always going to be a struggle, and the team were relegated with three games left.

All the time work went on in the background to keep Hampden alive as Scotland's National Stadium, and in 1980 Queen's thought they had secured a grant from the government towards an 11 million redevelopment of the stadium, one of the conditions being that Queen's gave up ownership of the stadium, although retaining the right to play there.

It is one of the legendary euphemisms of Scottish football that the bulldozers were on site ready to begin work, but that was the situation until the Rangers chairman persuaded the Scottish Sports secretary that there was no point in redeveloping Hampden when Ibrox was already in place. Over 10 million (in today's prices) was written off in fees as the government reneged on their deal. 

There is some irony in the fact that the refurbishment of Hampden in the late nineties almost collapsed because of a shortfall of 6 million, while the government were happy to write off almost twice as much as that in the eighties.

Back on the pitch, it took a couple of seasons to regroup after relegation, but in 1985/86 another good team was put together, including the likes of Ian McCall, Kenny Brannigan, Mark Smith and Ross Caven, and a great run from November onwards saw them lose only three times, but the handicap of an average start to the season prevented them from overhauling Dunfermline or Queen of the South.

Queen's also went on a great Scottish Cup run that season, dismissing Buckie of the Highland League, Albion Rovers of the second division, Dumbarton (just relegated from the Premier) and eventually losing out by the odd goal in three at Parkhead, although Jimmy Boyle had given Queen's the lead early in the second half with a penalty.

In 1987/88 Queen's were challenging again, but as two years before were up against two teams who were also on a good run, St Johnstone and Ayr. Queen's finished third, but equalled the club record for victories on the road with eleven wins away from HQ.

There wasn't much to shout about for the next few seasons, but there was a reasonable chance of promotion in 1990/91, where Queen's held second place for most of the season until four games to go, when a second half collapse at Stenhousemuir saw us lose 4-1, eventually finishing fifth as Montrose overtook us to go up with Stirling.

The following three season saw finishes in the lower half of the table, and in December 1994 Queen's and coach Eddie Hunter went their separate ways.

He was followed by Hugh McCann in April 1995, and in his first season Queen's finished comfortably in mid table, but in 1996/97 we were back towards the bottom of the table and another change was made following McCann's dismissal in April 1997.

He was replaced by a first for Queen's Park, a player/coach role filled by Graeme Elder, and although results improved slightly, by March 1998 he indicated that he would not be continuing in a coaching role beyond the end of that season.

After a long delay, he was followed by another first for the club, a full time coach, with John McCormack taking over in July 1998. His late arrival meant there was little change in the league position in 1998/99, but the following season started with a 14 match unbeaten run, and after a mi-season stutter ended with five wins on the bounce as Queen's lifted their first title in 20 years.

This success was achieved against the real possibility that the club might not last until the end of the season. The financial troubles over the rebuilding of Hampden meant that Queen's went into administration in January 2000, and in February 2000 the team and fans travelled to Brechin knowing that it could be the club's last game, as the administrator had declared that the situation must be resolved by the following Monday or the club would be put into receivership and therefore lose their league status. 

Although a solution was found that saved the club, the Labour Government insisted that part of the deal included management of the new stadium being transferred to the SFA at a very low rent, despite the SFA having contributed nothing to the rebuilding costs. This deal will run for 20 years from March 2000, with the SFA having the option to extend it for a further 20 years in 2020.

The following season in division two started with four straight wins, setting a new club record of nine consecutive league wins, but as the season went on results became harder to come by, and when Forfar won at Hampden on the second last day of the season the writing was on the wall, and a last day victory at Queen of the South wasn't enough to prevent relegation on goal difference.

In 2001/02 Queen's got off to a dreadful start, and didn't record a win until November, 16 games into the season. That terrible start also meant that Queen's were always struggling to get off the bottom of the pile, and when a last minute penalty was saved in the last game of the season at Dumbarton Queen's finished last for the first time in their history.

In November 2002 John McCormack left for a return to full time football, and in January 2003 ex-player Kenny Brannigan was appointed in his place, but his reign was terminated in August 2004 following an altercation with a fan during a game at Elgin.

Brannigan was replaced by Billy Stark, who lead the team to fourth place in his first season, and a disappointing set of results towards the end of the 2005/06 season prevented Queen's from qualifying for one of the play-off spots for promotion, a new initiative that season.

However, Stark led Queen's to arguably their greatest ever victory in August 2006, when they defeated Premier League Aberdeen in the CIS Cup on penalties at Firhill Stadium.    

His work did not go unnoticed, and in January 2008 he left Queen's to become Scotland's Under 21 coach, and was replaced by then Partick Thistle assistant, Gardner Speirs.

At the moment Queen's Park face the prospect of a year away from their home as Hampden becomes the venue for the athletics for the 2014 Commonwealth Games, with the venue for home games for this period to be confirmed.

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