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The good old days of Wilderspool


Gary
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This reminded me why I hardly attend live games any more!

My first ever live game of Rugby League at Wilderspool - and we think Super League and Summer Rugby has improved the game! Yes, the players are fitter and the stadiums (most of them) are smarter. But this was a packed Wilderspool involving two teams playing for a county cup which doesn't even exist anymore!
This was the game and atmosphere which made me become a fan. Not the corporate hospitality and flat expensive beer and posh nosh!
How I crave to be at a game with an atmosphere like this instead of the armchair fan I have become.
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I remember a few of the games i attended there as a youngster in the late sixties early seventies.

The one where the fog was so thick the ref abandoned the game after ten minutes as nobody knew where anybody else was. visibility was down to about two feet.

I also remember the game when the ground was so muddy that the ref stopped the game twenty minutes in for the teams to put clean shirts on so he could tell which side was which and the grounds crew worked feverishly to wash the dirty shirts for half time.

Then there was the light hearted banter between rival fans and the discussions as to the parentage of the man with the whistle and where his guide dog had got to.The walk home arguing about how long "five minute" had been on the pitch before being penalized for stiff arming the opposition (it was usually about five minutes hence the nickname my mates dad gave him can't remember who the actual player was).

No nipping to the pub for a pint after the game as it was sunday and the pubs shut at three and didn't reopen until six.

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5 hours ago, Evil Sid said:

I remember a few of the games i attended there as a youngster in the late sixties early seventies.

The one where the fog was so thick the ref abandoned the game after ten minutes as nobody knew where anybody else was. visibility was down to about two feet.

I also remember the game when the ground was so muddy that the ref stopped the game twenty minutes in for the teams to put clean shirts on so he could tell which side was which and the grounds crew worked feverishly to wash the dirty shirts for half time.

No nipping to the pub for a pint after the game as it was sunday and the pubs shut at three and didn't reopen until six.

I think we remember Wilderspool through rose tinted specs

I just remember being cold and wet at 50% of the games plus the toilets were a public health hazard ... I could go on but won't

And there were many grounds I visited even worse than ours.

The directors of clubs just wanted to stuff their own pockets with cash and never ever spent money on improving their clubs grounds.

Today with summer rugby and safe clean stadia we are a million miles away from those days.

 

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They had toilets?.......i thought that was just an open sewer.

Not rose tinted by all means i remember the pies they served. meat and potato so hot one bite and your mouth and tongue were blistered for three days.and if you opted for the gourmet pies they told you what meat it was as well........🥵

Don't think i ever went to game without six layers of clothing on and four pairs of thick wool socks.(feet never did stay warm)

 

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18 hours ago, Davy51 said:

Wakefield still have toilets like that.

Yes I've had the misfortune to go there ...

No excuse in this day and age to not implement basic cleaning routines

Grounds that fall below a certain standard should be closed until implemented 

 

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31 minutes ago, Davy51 said:

Not the most hygienic of places to go to.

Except in the Match Day Hospitality Boxes (surprise surprise)

The peasants on the terraces are expected to put up and shut up .

Out of interest the worst I ever encountered were in the old Halifax ground Thrum Hall.

Any other suggestions ?

 

 

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The old Huyton ground at Alt Park . It was still being built . You watched the game stood on duck boards ,same in the bogs.

There must be plenty of horror stories out there Latch.

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3 minutes ago, Davy51 said:

The old Huyton ground at Alt Park . It was still being built . You watched the game stood on duck boards ,same in the bogs.

There must be plenty of horror stories out there Latch.

Yes... I never had the pleasure of a trip there thank goodness ☺️

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  • 2 months later...

I saw many good games at Wilderspool  --i lived in Clock-Face and our Saturday mornings were spent in the Local baths in Bath Street --on leaving we had our dinner in town then on we would go to whoever Wire were playing --seen em all there my fav was Jimmy Challinor a classy centre,Eric Fraser was another top player --then catch no 140 back to Clock Face --happy days.

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On 5/25/2021 at 12:09 PM, Latchford Locks said:

Except in the Match Day Hospitality Boxes (surprise surprise)

The peasants on the terraces are expected to put up and shut up .

Out of interest the worst I ever encountered were in the old Halifax ground Thrum Hall.

Any other suggestions ?

Odsal wanted some beating

 

 

 

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On 8/22/2021 at 4:35 PM, artie said:

I saw many good games at Wilderspool  --i lived in Clock-Face and our Saturday mornings were spent in the Local baths in Bath Street --on leaving we had our dinner in town then on we would go to whoever Wire were playing --seen em all there my fav was Jimmy Challinor a classy centre,Eric Fraser was another top player --then catch no 140 back to Clock Face --happy days.

The days when public transport actually provided a public service Artie. Those golden days of yore.

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