Welcome to volume two of my blog paying homage to the football clubs I've visited all over the world and the wonderful people responsible for keeping them going and looking after the stadiums, and in some cases basic grounds.

Since I was a little lad I've been fascinated in football and more so where games are played. With my love of travel and curiosity of the game I wanted to visit as many grounds and see games wherever possible. I was lucky that my Dad also loved the game and spent so much of his spare time taking me to matches. As I got older the boundaries widened owing to my location and increased wages to Europe and indeed the world. The sight of a stand or a floodlight pylon in the distance immediately hightens my senses and eagerness for a closer look.

I hope this site gives you the chance to share in my pleasure and experiences and maybe one day set you on the road to adventure. If you get half as much out of the hobby as I've done I can guarantee some great memories, good friends and stories to pass on to future generations.

Give your local club a go today. They'll be pleased to see you!

Everlasting thanks primarily to my late and very much missed and dearly loved parents; my Dad Bob Bernard and my Mum; Ann, who put up with endless years of football chat and my brothers Nick and Paul who gave me the chance and encouragement to do what I have. Thanks to all my friends who offer encouragement and Sally and Stan who inspire and give me great pride. Young Stan is showing a keen interest in my hobby!

Please feel free to post any comments (please use sensible language - I want everyone to be able to enjoy reading) or ask any questions relating to visiting grounds or events. If you want to see any ground reviewed please let me know. It will take quite some time for everywhere to appear, but make sure you keep having a look as the site is continually updated.

If you click on a lot of the pictures you will get a larger version on your screen.

I have also added links to video clips on youtube where appropriate for those of you who are bored of reading or are filling in time at work. I haven't always gone for the most obvious choices, but items that will be in some cases unusual but always historically interesting.

Click to see volume one of HAOTW.

Rob Bernard


September 2015

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Brighouse Town

Brighouse Town FC are a non league football club who were formed in 1963. The club come from the town of Brighouse in West Yorkshire a few miles to the east of Halifax with a tradition of producing fine brass bands.

Until 1975 the club competed in the Huddersfield Works League, when they joined the West Riding County Amateur Football League. After being crowned champions on five occasions 'Town' were accepted into the Northern Counties East League for the 2007-08 season.

After consolidating their position they finished second in Division One in the 2009-10 season and won promotion to the Premier Division The club did suffer a setback when arsonists burnt down some of the facilities at t. Giles Road, but the club stayed strong and with the help of other clubs it maintained its status. Brighouse stabilised once more at their higher level before finishing in a fine fourth division at the end of the 2011-12 season.

Town put in a spectacular effort in an assault on the NCEL title in the 2012-13 season, as they finished runners up to Scarborough Athletic.

Brighouse Town FC will compete in the Northern Counties East League Premier Division for the 2013-14 season.

My visit

Brighouse Town 1 Scarborough Athletic 2 (Saturday 19th March 2011) Northern Counties East League Premier Division (att: 222)

I had travelled up the afternoon before the game to stay in Scarborough and attend the Fans Forum at the Bowls Centre. The evening was its usual honest self and manger Paul Olsson was good enough to attend and answer questions from the fans. If anything he was a bit too honest in telling us that he was struggling to attract new players to the club.

The next morning I was up first thing, which wasn't ideal after some fine ale, but I'd promised I'd go through to York to see my borther Nick and his family. My niece Sally had a game for Heworth Girls and I wanted to go along and offer her some support. They picked me up at York station before we set off to Poppleton for the match.

After a run around giving Stanley a kick around we cheered Sally and her team to another predictable defeat before getting back to pick up Rachel for their afternoon out after they'd dropped me in the car park of the Hop Grove. My kind driver for the afternoon Jamie Nunns was already waiting with Bunner and Badger.

We set off down the A64 and then the M62, arriving outside the ground on St Giles Road at just gone 2pm. The small car park was full so we parked on the road side outside, which turned out well because it was on the way to The Old Pond pub. This was a fine old Tetley's house and the beer was spot on. We had time for a quick couple of pints before we had to walk five minutes back to the ground.

We entered into the grandly named Dual Seal Stadium, which had been re-named after a sponsorship deal. In truth the ground was pretty basic, but it covered all the requirements. ne side had a long low cover with accommodation for both standing and seating. The rest of the ground was flat open grass and hard standing. The far side had the dug outs and a practice pitch beyond, with the entrance end having the changing rooms set back from the pitch and a portakabin that served as a clubhouse, bar and refreshment outlet.

Boro were in the middle of an indifferent spell under Paul Olsson. Their inconsistency was causing a bit of dissatisfaction amongst the support although he did a good job of placating some at the previous evenings gathering. We didn't imagine at the time that he was close to being dismissed. He only lasted another three three games after this encounter.

There were lots of youth players at the game and they ran a collection for a young player who had tragically died when playing the week before. As ever, the Boro fans were ever generous. Brighouse seemed a nice club and the warm welcome and complimentary words about our club were certainly appreciated.

The Seadogs went behind despite being on top when Lee Burgess volleyed past Tom Woodhead to put Town ahead. Boro fielded youngsters Callum Reid and Josh Clayton who showed some promise. Towards the end of the first period Ryan Blott struck twice to put Boro ahead and was then unlucky not to complete his hat trick.

The second half saw Boro generally on top, but they couldn't add to their lead. It had been an improvement on previous performances without being totally convincing. It still meant the beer tasted better when we got back to Scarborough!

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