THE match programme from Bradford City’s first game at Valley Parade has been uncovered by a relative of someone who was there.

Leonard Turner was among the 11,000 spectators who watched City lose 3-1 to Gainsborough on September 5, 1903 in their debut season in the Football League.

And his grandson Andy made the rare find recently when going through some of his late father’s papers.

The programme will now be going up for auction – with an estimated value between £1,500 and £2,500.

“I’m the family archivist and do all the research,” explained Andy.

“There are some boxes I’m going through because my dad, who also spent his working life in Bradford, would have been 100 this year if he had still been with us.

“I have been trying to pull together something I can share around the family as a memento.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: The details on Leonard Turner sent to the auctioneerThe details on Leonard Turner sent to the auctioneer (Image: Andy Turner)

“He was a Bradford Northern fan, although he would watch what was happening with Bradford City.

“I was going through papers I haven’t looked at for ages and just pulled this out. I wasn’t aware of its significance.

“My grandfather was an only child brought up in Manningham and must have been about 12 when he acquired the card.

“He also won a prize of £5 in the Bradford Daily Telegraph for the most accurate prediction for 12 football matches. That would have felt like a fortune at the time!

“He was quite a good sportsman himself and played goalkeeper for Manningham Salem, among other local clubs, before the war.”

Leonard Turner signed up soon after the outbreak of the First World War, joining the Northumberland Fusiliers with best friend Tom Taylor, who was killed in the Battle of the Somme in 1916.

“He survived the war but was injured a number of times, including most seriously when he was shot in the head,” added Andy.

“The family story is that he was lucky because the King’s surgeon was working close enough by to be able to operate on him. He saved his life at the expense of having a silver plate put in his skull.”

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Pictures in the programme of all the Bradford City playersPictures in the programme of all the Bradford City players (Image: Andy Turner)

Leonard returned to Heaton after the war but Andy said he found life increasingly tough.

“Having been wounded four times, I think he was a shadow of his former self.

“He found it difficult to hold down a job. Much of the breadwinning fell to my grandmother and they had very little money – my father and his brother and sister grew up in very strained circumstances in the 1920s and ‘30s.

“But I can’t imagine what my grandfather would think to know this little treasure was lurking among the papers!

“None of us live in Yorkshire anymore, so we thought the most appropriate thing is that it can be enjoyed by a current Bradford City fan.”

Click HERE to place a bid for the programme. The live auction runs on March 5 and 6.