The Big Cheese

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Sunday 29th July 2018 ko 17.00

Peterborough & District League Division Two

STILTON FC 4 (West 38 49 80 McManus 74)

CARDEA 2 (Dandrilli 55 Yeoman 60)

Att 304

Entry £4

Programme £1

You mention Stilton and you can’t help think of cheese can you? In that sense it’s just like Cheddar, and I’m bound to comment that they attracted a lower attendance for their hop game, despite being 3 divisions higher in the footballing pyramid. Perhaps that’s an unfair comparison, as just about the only thing the two clubs have in common is the cheese. There was so much more going on at Stilton too… Continue reading

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The Flour of Wellingborough

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Sunday 29th July 2018 ko 13.15

United Counties League Premier Division

WELLINGBOROUGH WHITWORTH 0

COGENHOE UNITED 3 (Dore 27 Dove 45 82)

Att 302

Entry £5

Programme £1

Quite literally it was a 30 second walk from Wellingborough Town’s Dog & Duck to Wellingborough Whitworth’s Victoria Mills Ground. One lies at right-angles to the other, and for years Whitworth were seen as very much the junior neighbour to Town. The club were started in 1973, and despite the name seem to have had little or no connection to the famous flour-making company based originally in Irthlingborough and now in Wellingborough. But in the here and now I had a queue to contemplate.

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Take It Easy

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Sunday 29th July 2018 ko 11.00

United Counties League Premier Division

WELLINGBOROUGH TOWN 3 (Freitas 48 Speight 55 59)

PETERBOROUGH NORTHERN STAR 0

Att 237

Entry £6

Programme £2

When the rains came we were glad of a little cover. Having a large stand at the Dog & Duck Ground was a godsend, it meant that everyone who wanted to be undercover could be. Someone came up to me and laughed, “You planned it this way didn’t you?” If only life were that easy…. Continue reading

Ruskington

Saturday 27th July 2018 ko 19.45

United Counties League Premier Division

SLEAFORD TOWN 0

DEEPING RANGERS 1 (Simpson 17)

Att 285

Entry £6

Programme £1

There seemed to be more than simply geography involved in the coach trip from Sutton Bridge to Sleaford. We’d spent the rest of the day watching 3 games in the company of the Peterborough & District League, but were moving 2 promotions up to the top flight of the United Counties League. The level we’d be watching would attract a largely different type of hopper to this game- and that would be one who took a far greater notice of what facilities would be on offer. Continue reading

The Drummer Boy

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Saturday 28th July 2018 ko 16.30

Peterborough & District League Premier Division

SUTTON BRIDGE UNITED 5 (Sutton 19 Fowler 55 Eaton 67p 71p 75)

PETERBOROUGH POLONIA 3 (Stepien 36 Janicki 43 Wojtonicz 90) Lacina sent off 68 (2nd booking)

Att 337

Entry £4

Programme £1

We returned to South Holland, Lincolnshire, for our third game of the day and passed Sutton Bridge’s most famous landmark along the way. Sutton Bridge sits astride the River Nene, and the Crosskeys bridge is unusual in that not is it a swingbridge but it also used to carry both road and railway but was converted to just road use when the railway closed in 1965!

In medieval times the village was the closest settlement to where legend has it King John lost the Crown Jewels in 1216. A horse-drawn baggage train of his army attempted to cross the marshes without a guide, the wagons moved too slowly for the incoming tide or flood tide, and many lives were lost, together with their possessions and the jewels. John himself died of dysentery a week later! Continue reading

A Great Pair of Tydds

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Saturday 28th July 2018 ko 13.30

Peterborough & District League Premier League- Premier Division

TYDD FC 2 (McGuire 59og Clitheroe 90p)

MOULTON HARROX 3 (Bradbury 29 Townsend 50 King 58)

Att 342

Entry £4

Programme £1

The cavalcade didn’t have far to travel from Whaplode Drove to Tydd St Giles, even if our coach driver did manage to drive to Tydd St Mary first! You could see why he made the mistake, Tydd did play there last season! Continue reading

Elizabethan

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Saturday 28th July 2018 ko 10.45

Peterborough & District League Division Two

WHAPLODE DROVE 1 (Forth 34)

RIPPINGDALE & FOLKINGHAM 3 (Mason 51 Hasler 74 Ferrow 77p)

Att 227

Entry £3

Programme £1

After the relative disappointment of the Raunds game, Saturday dawned with the knowledge that that the hop had a compelling day lined up. I smiled inwardly at myself thinking that, on the first hop I’d seen including the PDFL clubs as a risk, normally the organised groundhop’s sweet spot is at Non-League’s Steps 5 & 6. It is to the great credit of every single club we’ve featured from that league, that Chris and I at GroundhopUK knew that scheduling 3 PDFL hop games on the bounce would prove popular. And a little club from the 10th tier below the Football League proved the point rather well. Continue reading

The Shop Window

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Friday 27th July 2018 ko 19.45

United Counties League Division One

RAUNDS TOWN 0

IRCHESTER UNITED 4 (Harewood 46 Lovell 57 Taylor 63 Bell 75)

Att 245

Entry £5

Programme £1

Of all the organised events GroundhopUK are involved in the United Counties/ Peterborough & District Leagues’ hop is the easiest to organise. A lot of that is down to John Weeks and Wendy Newey at HQ, it really does help when you know that if you ask a favour it’ll get done, but much as due to the high standards that the two leagues have set over the 3 previous years the hop has run. In fact the measure of how good those host clubs have been was the reaction of all concerned when the standard dropped slightly.

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Timbers

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Tuesday 22nd July 2018 ko 19.15

Pre-season Friendly

VIRGINIA WATER 1 (Griffiths 25)

BANSTEAD ATHLETIC 3 (Holden 11 38 Evered 88og)

Att 40 at The Timbers

15 years ago, when I started groundhopping this is what Step 6 in the South-East looked like. For the most part, a railed off pitch with a clubhouse was all you needed, and it was only when you started heading north that the difference in facilities became obvious. I remember a group of London-based hoppers not coming on one of the early Central Midlands Hops, because they’d decided there’d be all fields. The depressing thought is that I still hear these bleats even now. Remember the Notts-based hopper who told everyone 2-3 years ago that the South Peninsula League Hop would be “All fields”. What? St Austell? Wendron? Continue reading

East Heading West

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Saturday 21st July 2018 ko 15.00

Pre-season Friendly

GORLESTON 3 (Gilfedder 13 45 Ramm 21)

LOWESTOFT TOWN 4 (Brown 9 12 Overy 46 Folkes 54)

Att 193

Entry £3

No Programme

My regular reader my have spotted a running theme of me gradually ticking off the grounds of the Eastern Counties League. Part of the reason is prioritising those Leagues not being visited by an organised hop, and another is regular trips with Wavendon- based Chris. His location near Milton Keynes makes heading east sensible, but there is the vexed question of what to do about the grounds he’s done that I haven’t. One was Gorleston, and with him being unavailable I simply picked the furthest one east! Continue reading