Although he never featured in a competitive first-team game for Exeter City, there is a case for considering goalkeeper Reg Loram as an honorary first-team player by dint of his participation on the 1914 tour of Argentina and Brazil. Having had his route to the first-team blocked by Dick Pym’s 186 consecutive first-team games either side of the First World War, Reg found himself playing in half of the games in South America once Pym had suffered an injury.
Reg Loram, a farmer’s son from Alphington (where there is a Loram Close), was born in 1890 and is shown as working on the farm in the 1911 census. Appearing for Exeter City’s reserve team he participated, as the only amateur in the party, in the 1914 tour to Argentina and Brazil as understudy to Dick Pym.
Pym, one of City’s stars of the day and destined to play on a wider stage, hadn’t missed a game since his league debut in March 1912 but was soon out of action whilst the team was still in Argentina meaning that Reg took over the jersey for the Brazilian leg of the tour. Making what was effectively - albeit not officially - his first-team debut several thousand miles from home, Reg could always claim to have played in what became the historic fixture against a Brazil XI.
As it transpired, Reg was never to play in a league or cup match for City as Dick Pym continued in goal throughout 1914/15 prior to football being suspended for the war that was starting as City made their way home from South America. Having suffered from rheumatism during the war, Reg recovered to make a comeback with City’s reserves after football resumed and - in the opinion of the local press - would have been capable of performing perfectly well in the Southern League had it not been for Dick Pym’s brilliance and consistency. But, when Dick Pym eventually missed a few games in January 1921, it was Charlie Waller who was on hand to take his place.
Over the following years Reg continued to be involved with City’s reserves and later, during the first half of the 1930s, as assistant trailer and then trainer to the first-team. Marrying Winifred Brown at Heavitree parish church in 1923, he was recorded as living at “The Stores” in Wiggaton near Ottery St Mary in 1939.
Reg Loram died in Exeter in 1978.