1951 was the Festival of Britain year and in the massive national celebration large events were taking place. Specifically arranged friendly football matches were arranged and Ayrt United became involved, travelling to England for a series of matches. United began at Luton Town’s Kenilworth Roadbut things looked bleak ear,y on trailing 3-0 at half time. However two second half goals from Stockdale and Beattie pulled Ayr back into only to lose a late 4th goal for a 4-2 defeat.
Ayr drafted in 6 reserve players for the match on the Monday night against non-league Bedford Town which may have been a mis calculation as United lost 1-0. On Wednesday 16th Ayr travelled to Plymouth Argyle’s Home Park where, despite Harpwer scoring for Ayr a disputed 80th minute goal gave the English club a 2-1 win.
The tight schedule was taking its toll on Ayr as they trooped out onto Brighton’s Goldstone Ground on the Saturday. Ayr recorded a single goal from Stockdale in the 5-1 defeat to a third tier Brighton.
Again a fuller report of the tour is contained in Duncan Carmichael’s ‘Official History of Ayr United Football Club, volume 2.