Bob Wiggin

Good as Gold - Bob Wiggin's story

Good as Gold is a celebration of our city and its industry, inspired by Bob Wiggin.

Bob Wiggin grew up a stone’s throw away from Molineux at the now demolished 108 Waterloo Road. He got his first taste of football by sneaking in to watch Wolves home games when he was just 9 years old. He was instantly spellbound. At the time Wolves were one of, if not the best team in world football, blazing a trail for what later became the European Cup with a famous 3-2 victory against the talismanic Ferenc Puskás’s Honved, a game seen as so momentous it was unexpectedly broadcast live on BBC television. This rare televised game inspired a young George Best so much that he instantly became a Wolves supporter.

Bob’s heroes at this time included Peter Broadbent, Malcolm Finlayson and Ron Flowers, as he witnessed the later years of the most successful period in the club’s history, all from the kid’s pen on the North Bank.

Waterloo Road
108 Waterloo Road, a stone's throw from the Molineux

Bob enjoyed growing up in Whitmore Reans in the 1960s with its diverse mix of communities. Finding a love for soul, reggae, ska and blue beat, he was a regular at Wolverhampton’s legendary soul club The Catacombs and the hip Lafayette, along with Scruples and The Montego Club.

After starting his career as an apprentice printer at Walsall Litho he then moved to Wolverhampton’s Goodyear plant in 1973. The first brick of Wolverhampton’s Goodyear was laid in 1927, by E. A. Wood, the town mayor. The plant in Bushbury became Goodyear’s first in Europe. By 1929, it had manufactured its millionth tyre. In his 25 years at Goodyear, Bob worked in many roles, initially starting as a QC Patrol Inspector, then working in the Millroom on the Banbury Deck, before becoming a Quality Engineer in the Testcage. In the early 70s more than 5,000 people were employed at the Wolverhampton plant, which occupied 96 acres and was a major provider of social and sporting activities for employees and their families.

His love for the city and its football club has never wavered. Heroes came and went as he watched the club reach the final of the first ever UEFA Cup in 1972, and win the league cup in both 1974 and 1980…Munro, Richards, Dougan, Wagstaffe. After witnessing Steve Bull’s club record goal scoring exploits which rescued the club from the brink of non-existence in the 80s, Bob became a turnstile operator in 1996. For the next 7 years, whatever was going on the pitch, he enjoyed welcoming fans during the Jack Hayward era which had ushered in a sense of renewed hope.

Today Bob still follows Wolves avidly and is delighted to see the club thriving in the Premier League under Nuno Espirito Santo and owners Fosun. The Goodyear site is now under ongoing development and the famous clocktower will receive a blue plaque acknowledging the contribution that the company and its workers made to the city during a period of 90 years.

Bob Wiggin

I’m immensely proud of coming from Wolverhampton because the city has a deserved reputation for being a friendly and welcoming community. This is evident in the diverse multicultural population which continues to enrich the City.

Another reason I’m proud to be a Wulfrunian is our Premiership football team, Wolves, who I have supported since I was a small boy in the 1950s. What other football team has such an iconic name ‘Wolves’ and an equally iconic club emblem?

I’m proud to be a life-long member of the Wolverhampton Pack.