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A personal, potted history.... walking through centre turnstile on riverside to a packed Ewood for the first time. Awestruck at the scarves, rattles. marching band. seeing Ronnie Clayton lea

Rovers fans have a lot to be thankful to Bill Fox for. An often forgotten figure in our ascendancy but the man who laid the foundations. While the rest of our traditional rivals were applying for re-e

I was just sat having a brew and sausage sandwich and my wife informed me that tomorrow is the third anniversary of her dad passing away aged 92. He was a 'hybrid' football supporter, following both R

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19 hours ago, 47er said:

My Dad and I had a season ticket for years in the Nuttall St Stand. From the early 50's on the seats were benches.

At some point later in the later 50's they replaced them with individtual seats. But they were never painted, just plain wood.

My dad took me in the early 1950s. We always sat in Nuttall Street stand, Stand B which was the one at an angle nearest the Blackburn End. There we sat on benches as in the previous photograph. The straight stand running to the Darwen End was known as Stand A and, as far as I know, had individual (bucket) seats.

We also took my dad's friend who had lost a leg in the 1st world war. We always left early, about 5 minutes before full time, to get back to my dad's car which he parked up that little street in front of The Fox and Hounds.

It was Stand B that later burnt down.

Just think, 47er, us little lads may have been sitting near each other in those days.

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I was walking along the canal the other day and remembered the avatar of our own member Riversider28. His picture is of the Ewood fair with the Rovers ground in the background. I imagine it was taken in the 1970s. I love that photo and below is how it looks all these years later

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20210101_224942.jpg

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5 minutes ago, Colt Seavers said:

I was walking along the canal the other day and remembered the avatar of our own member Riversider28. His picture is of the Ewood fair with the Rovers ground in the background. I imagine it was taken in the 1970s. I love that photo and below is how it looks all these years later

051ED444-B549-49FF-9C18-A75C94D7C5C9.png.af4b2c16f7253aeb9e3bfe0ce594ee90.png

 

Had my pocket picked at the Ewood Fair, only found out when I tried to pay for a Hot-Dog. The seller was not sympathetic, in fact downright rude, and I was too young to swear to an adult. 🤔🤣

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10 hours ago, Tyrone Shoelaces said:

Anybody who served in Norway and Crete had it rough. Two chaotic evacuations.

He never mentioned a dickie bird Tyrone to either me or my Dad. I only know from the bit of research I did because I have his Regimental Number. There is much more detailed information to be found for WW1 and prior but surprisingly not as much for WW2. Perhaps that will change as the years pass.

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16 minutes ago, AllRoverAsia said:

Had my pocket picked at the Ewood Fair, only found out when I tried to pay for a Hot-Dog. The seller was not sympathetic, in fact downright rude, and I was too young to swear to an adult. 🤔🤣

I love that photo too ARA. It evokes memories of me and Gran on our annual Easter trip to the fair and in the background is the home of the second love of my life, after my family.

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3 hours ago, bazza said:

My dad took me in the early 1950s. We always sat in Nuttall Street stand, Stand B which was the one at an angle nearest the Blackburn End. There we sat on benches as in the previous photograph. The straight stand running to the Darwen End was known as Stand A and, as far as I know, had individual (bucket) seats.

We also took my dad's friend who had lost a leg in the 1st world war. We always left early, about 5 minutes before full time, to get back to my dad's car which he parked up that little street in front of The Fox and Hounds.

It was Stand B that later burnt down.

Just think, 47er, us little lads may have been sitting near each other in those days.

They were great days. Ewood packed every game even though we were in Div 2. You're right about the A Stand too--I remember being jealous of their seats. I was at the Darwen End!

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1 hour ago, Colt Seavers said:

I was walking along the canal the other day and remembered the avatar of our own member Riversider28. His picture is of the Ewood fair with the Rovers ground in the background. I imagine it was taken in the 1970s. I love that photo and below is how it looks all these years later

051ED444-B549-49FF-9C18-A75C94D7C5C9.png.af4b2c16f7253aeb9e3bfe0ce594ee90.png

20210101_224942.jpg

I actually “acquired “ the avatar after seeing it posted on the site a few months back, so I can’t take any credit for it. The reason I chose it is because it shows my two greatest loves (not including The Vulcan) in Blackburn ever almost side by side. The two week Easter fair arriving gave me as much pleasure as seeing  Rovers thrash the old enemy. I can smell that heady mixture of candy floss, diesel and fried onions right now. Wonderful. 

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1 hour ago, Riversider28 said:

I actually “acquired “ the avatar after seeing it posted on the site a few months back, so I can’t take any credit for it. The reason I chose it is because it shows my two greatest loves (not including The Vulcan) in Blackburn ever almost side by side. The two week Easter fair arriving gave me as much pleasure as seeing  Rovers thrash the old enemy. I can smell that heady mixture of candy floss, diesel and fried onions right now. Wonderful. 

I can still smell those smells too, bloody marvellous. I can also relate to The Vulcan too: As 2 sixteen year olds, myself accompanied by someone who is now one of, if not the, most eminent solicitor in Blackburn, used to think nothing of going in for a pint in our school uniforms! Can you imagine that now?🤣

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8 hours ago, darrenrover said:

I can still smell those smells too, bloody marvellous. I can also relate to The Vulcan too: As 2 sixteen year olds, myself accompanied by someone who is now one of, if not the, most eminent solicitor in Blackburn, used to think nothing of going in for a pint in our school uniforms! Can you imagine that now?🤣

I used to do the same in Rochdale at the same age. A pub at the bottom of Blackwater Street that got knocked down in the 70's to make way for a soul less shopping centre. I think you had to be under 18 in there to get served ! The school I went to was slap bang in the centre of town which was handy for lots of things. However for football we had to be bussed out of town.

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On 06/01/2021 at 05:04, darrenrover said:

.....You may recall from above, that in 1939 Grandad darrenrover was drafted into the Royal Artillery and served throughout WW2 notably in Norway and Crete. He was actually de-mobbed in 1948, some 3 years after the end of The War. Here ends with him, my direct family lineage of Military history, which stretches back as far as 1858 and that is as far as my research has currently stretched. Grandad worked at ICI in Darwen after leaving the Army until he retired at 65 in 1975. (Picture below of Grandad darrenrover in his ICI bib and braces, with his beloved poodle Ricky) To my knowledge, Grandad darrenrover didn't attend Ewood again since the late forties/early fifties, shiftwork preventing him from doing so, until 1992 aged 82, when he was the eldest of 4 generations of a Rovers following family, when he, my Dad, myself and our eldest son all proudly attended The Play Off Final together. He sadly passed away 2 years later following a stroke.

My Great Great Grandad signed up aged 17, to The 104th Regiment of Foot, which was then part of The Honourable East India Company, becoming The Bengal Fusiliers in 1862 and part of the regular British Army. His service ended in 1879, having served 21 years, most of it poignantly in India, he became a Chelsea Pensioner and resided at Bowerham Barracks in Lancaster. The family subsequently moved to Darwen in 1899 and he found work as a labourer at Hollins Paper Mill. He may have become a Rover shortly after moving to the area, I don't know but I'd surely like to think so.

History lesson over, apologies, I decided to delegate the writing of the next chapter to my Dad: I thought he and Mum would probably enjoy a trip down memory lane and relieve the tedium of remaining at home for the past 10 months, due to their age vulnerability to Covid 19. I gave them the 'task' between Christmas and New Year and knowing the difference between delegation and abdication, I asked every day during our daily chat, as to how their 'project' was going? Oh ok, was the daily reply, our memories aren't what they were you know (they're 84 and 85). Last night at 10.22pm my phone pinged with a WhatsApp message from my Dad! He'd no doubt had a healthy measure of Dalwhinnie after Mum had gone to bed, as is the norm! "Read your bloody emails!" it said!  Unedited, here is his email to me:

"I have so many memories but am struggling to put them in order. Perhaps a question and answer from you would help us a lot (I'm going to oblige his request over the next few days).My very first is being taken by my Dad and there were so many on the ground, that for safety, he stuffed me in a window space at the back of The Darwen End circa 1946/7. Rovers in First Division. Remember Eckersley, Crossen, Wharton and Langton and behold Derek Leaver. I'm thinking it was against West Brom, people passing out and rolled over the heads of the crowd to the front. This was just after The War and Dad was still in the Army as a regular. I was up from Corby to see my Grandparents. 

Beating Dingles 2-0 in a replay at Ewood after the bastards thought they'd dicked us when 3 up, with quarter of an hour to go at Turf Moor. I was on there too, stood on that big terrace at the side of the pitch, Longside I think. Dingle fans being hosed off the Darwen End Roof by firemen. Semi Final at Leeds v Newcastle (actually Hillsborough, programme below), replay midweek. Me and all schoolmates wrote sick notes for each other and wagged off school to go. We all denied going to Headmaster, next day in Telegraph, front page, photo back of goal and we were all on it, hence all got whacked but we lost. End Chapter, to be continued."

Edit: Having checked with Mike Jackman, the game my Dad referred to at Elland Road was actually the semi-final replay, having drawn with Newcastle 0-0 the preceding Saturday. So I incorrectly corrected him but as yet haven't turned up a match day programme for that evening kick off. Hence the reason the Head at Darwen Grammar gave him and his mates 6 of the best for skipping school!

Hopefully, I'll be back by weekend.....IMG_0425.thumb.JPG.81d235a4855c196df9db059294ce7aee.JPG

 

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I wonder if your dad’s recollection of the windows at the Darwen end were later than he recalls. They played WBA in the fifth round leading up to the semi final in 1952. We only arrived shortly before kick off, due to traffic, and there was no way I could get to the front to the benches over the wall. I was lifted into one one of the windows which I shared with a couple more youngsters who I’d never met before. Bill Eckersley scored the late winning penalty at that end and we all nearly fell out celebrating.

We the beat Burnley to reach the semi’s, I had a ticket and coach seat for Hillsborough. On the Thursday before the game, whilst messing around on the school bus I hurt my shoulder. The following morning my grandma took me (bedecked in blue and white) to Accrington Victoria and a dislocated shoulder was diagnosed and clicked back into place. I had told the consultant I was going to Sheffield but he said I couldn’t as he needed to check me out. My mum took me on Saturday morning and he wasn’t even there, I don’t think I took my coat off before a nurse decided everything was fine. I swore my grandma had colluded with him.
Everyone I know who was at Hillsborough was convinced a Nightingale shot crossed the line, unfortunately the officials thought otherwise. I did go to the Leeds replay as I was off school legitimately but I’m sure I’d have been prepared to bunk off and take the consequences.

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16 minutes ago, Vilesinner said:

Robbie Savage is sure going up in the world! 🙂

It's like something he would do. Ha ha!

 

 

FB_IMG_1610027036616.jpg

Tosser! Robbie Savage I mean!!

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15 hours ago, darrenrover said:

I can still smell those smells too, bloody marvellous. I can also relate to The Vulcan too: As 2 sixteen year olds, myself accompanied by someone who is now one of, if not the, most eminent solicitor in Blackburn, used to think nothing of going in for a pint in our school uniforms! Can you imagine that now?🤣

....and then there was always Peepers off King William Street on a Friday night! Loadstar on Thursdays, Shepherd's Rest........

Edited by darrenrover
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5 hours ago, renrag said:

I wonder if your dad’s recollection of the windows at the Darwen end were later than he recalls. They played WBA in the fifth round leading up to the semi final in 1952. We only arrived shortly before kick off, due to traffic, and there was no way I could get to the front to the benches over the wall. I was lifted into one one of the windows which I shared with a couple more youngsters who I’d never met before. Bill Eckersley scored the late winning penalty at that end and we all nearly fell out celebrating.

We the beat Burnley to reach the semi’s, I had a ticket and coach seat for Hillsborough. On the Thursday before the game, whilst messing around on the school bus I hurt my shoulder. The following morning my grandma took me (bedecked in blue and white) to Accrington Victoria and a dislocated shoulder was diagnosed and clicked back into place. I had told the consultant I was going to Sheffield but he said I couldn’t as he needed to check me out. My mum took me on Saturday morning and he wasn’t even there, I don’t think I took my coat off before a nurse decided everything was fine. I swore my grandma had colluded with him.
Everyone I know who was at Hillsborough was convinced a Nightingale shot crossed the line, unfortunately the officials thought otherwise. I did go to the Leeds replay as I was off school legitimately but I’m sure I’d have been prepared to bunk off and take the consequences.

I think Dad is probably getting his fixtures mixed up: in 1952 he'd be 14, so I doubt his Dad would be lifting him into a window space out of the way then( He's still over 6 foot now at 82). He will undoubtedly have been present for the 5th Round Tie v WBA though (51,177 on Ewood for that match!) In 1946/7 he'd be 8 or 9, so in all probability he's got the year about right but not the opponents.

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22 hours ago, Colt Seavers said:

I was walking along the canal the other day and remembered the avatar of our own member Riversider28. His picture is of the Ewood fair with the Rovers ground in the background. I imagine it was taken in the 1970s. I love that photo and below is how it looks all these years later

051ED444-B549-49FF-9C18-A75C94D7C5C9.png.af4b2c16f7253aeb9e3bfe0ce594ee90.png

20210101_224942.jpg

Great contrast Colt.

I pulled the photo from 'Blackburn now and then' - taken from Mill Hill flats, Easter fair 1972.

I couldn't possible ask Riversider28 for royalties, or could I 😀

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...Dad darrenrovers on a roll, totally unsolicited, I've just had the text message, "Have you written up my next 2 big paragraphs then?" Well I haven't, so again in my Dad's own words aged 82 (yep I got it wrong and mum's 84 not 85, so I suffered the virtual tongue lashing from both! 😛)

"Stopped watching Rovers as regular in 1953 and joined Bolton Harriers and later, Blackburn Harriers. I had a bit of success winning Lancashire 100 yards, second in 220 yards and also won the long jump. I came second in North v South. I was then second to Alf Meakin in the first ever track meeting at Witton Park. I packed up athletics after, mainly due to courting. 

Went to Ewood again with your Grandad (Grandad blackburnrover) in 1956. He was to become my father in law in 1959 when I wed your Mum.

Good, in fact great times, I forgot to mention signing Eddie Quigley from Preston: everyone moaned he was lazy, maybe he was, but he didn't need to run, he made the ball do his talking. He was the best passer of a ball I've seen, apart from Ronnie Clayton.

Start of one season, we'd just been promoted I think, we won the first 3 games 5-0, 5-1 and 5-0; one of which I think was Tottenham.

On to the 1958 FA Cup semi-final at Maine Road against Bolton. Your Grandad and me climbed off a crash barrier and into a roof strut to escape the crush. Sad but we lost 2-1.

For the 1960 FA Cup Final and run up, Mum and I were living in Stirling, Scotland. Having just got wed, we moved up there because I worked for Duttons, stock checking in all their tied houses in Scotland. I learned some tricks of the trade I'll tell you. Week before final, our old tv set on fire. Panic stations set in and had to get a new telly in time, which we managed to do. Bastard Jocks didn't show the match live, so had to listen the radio and was almost in tears when Whelan broke his leg. Dougan might have well not been on the pitch, he didn't give a shite. After the game we found out he had asked for a transfer the night before the Final. There was a real souring of the fans over tickets too. Tickets were really in short supply but yet all the players were given 150 tickets each, I know because Ronnie told me. He said that he kept 10 for Val and other friends and family but gave the rest back to the club to sell to fans. Many tickets were sold on black market at 10 times face value. Big loss to fan base for many years after. Your Grandad went to every game home and away and replays too but he didn't get a ticket for the Final."

To be continued into the sixties and my personal introduction aged 5 in 1966........

(Images below: 1958 FA Cup Semi-Final, all 1960 FA Cup matches including replays, which Grandad blackburnrover attended (except Spurs which I presume he missed) to our defeat in the Final v Wolves (I picked up the programme on eBay)

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71874F47-B3A9-4440-95FF-FE8D37613937.jpeg

8D7B1963-4320-4850-AADF-75CBC72EA000.jpeg

Edited by darrenrover
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5 minutes ago, Gav said:

Great contrast Colt.

I pulled the photo from 'Blackburn now and then' - taken from Mill Hill flats, Easter fair 1972.

I couldn't possible ask Riversider28 for royalties, or could I 😀

Haha. I'll have to pay you too in that case Gav as it's printed off and on my wall. There is something magical about that photo. 

So it was taken from Mill Hill flats then. I thought the trajectory was a bit different to mine. I wondered exactly where it had been snapped. 

What is 'Blackburn Now and Then'? Sounds like something I would be interested in looking at.

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10 minutes ago, Colt Seavers said:

Haha. I'll have to pay you too in that case Gav as it's printed off and on my wall. There is something magical about that photo. 

I couldn't agree more, its just that moment in time, very special indeed.

You don't need an account to look at this facebook page, hope you've got a spare 2/3hrs!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/blackburnnowandthen/

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1 hour ago, Gav said:

I couldn't agree more, its just that moment in time, very special indeed.

You don't need an account to look at this facebook page, hope you've got a spare 2/3hrs!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/blackburnnowandthen/

Wow! Just browsing through that now. Absolutely fantastic. Much appreciated Gav, many thanks!

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10 hours ago, Gav said:

Me too, kit looks late 70’s early 80’s under Kendal, where is that pic taken?

On the boule, the old Whitbread brewery is the building top right. The Adelphi the building on the left?

Edited by rigger
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8 hours ago, Gav said:

Me too, kit looks late 70’s early 80’s under Kendal, where is that pic taken?

I was pondering that too. I wondered if it is on the boulevard, sort of around the Star and Garter (or was it the Adelphi) just before the train station. 

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9 hours ago, Colt Seavers said:

Shamelessly 'borrowed' from Blackburn Now and Then. I vaguely remember seeing this around. 

94908320_2639919439624069_2486695539358302208_n.jpg

Doing some more digging I found the below picture which is definitely on the boulevard and seems to be the same place if you look at the building behind and the wall to the right. Mystery solved?

89484653_4277687102248808_7851208553619521536_o.jpg

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