Farewell Boleyn: Boxing Day cancelled!

IMG_0859As a kid one of the things I looked forward to most at Christmas was football on Boxing Day. Walking up to the ground in my new hat and scarf, probably in that season’s tracksuit which would have been another Christmas present.
The atmosphere was generally more relaxed with the fans full of Christmas spirit.
In 1979 though disappointment came calling. Birmingham City were the visitors but I was all dressed up with nowhere to go, sat waiting for my uncle to collect me but when he arrived around 10am for the early 11am kick off he was the bearer of bad news.
The game was off, the ground was still frozen after the snow that had fallen in the previous five days, the snow arriving on the 21st, half way through the Hammers 3-1 home victory against Cambridge United.
So as not to be too disappointed we still walked up to the ground where I was lucky enough to be able to buy one of the programmes that were on sale and are quite a collectors item now.
The notice board with the chalked up “match off” message informing those arriving to keep walking past was indicative of the days when there was no Twitter, Internet or ClaretandHugh to inform the fans to save themselves the journey.
The game itself wasn’t played until the April with the Hammers, looking forward to the FA Cup final, losing out to the Blues. That game was more notable for two other things though. Alan Curbishley returned to the Boleyn to play against his boyhood club but more importantly Billy Bonds was sent off after clashing with Colin Todd.
That nearly cost him his Cup Final appearance but luckily the ‘suits’ at the FA saw sense.
Nigel Kahn

About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon

2 comments on “Farewell Boleyn: Boxing Day cancelled!

  1. Great pic! Love the simplicity of it from a bygone age (my childhood too!) – jumpers for goalposts?! #coyi

  2. Great picture and article Nigel.

    That postponed match reminded me of being at the turn off on the A13, going to a CFC home game after we’d had the new state of the art pitch with new under soil heating, drainage and watering system put in. Trouble is we’d set it up wrong and the pitch was still frozen. This was after the club announced it was such a good system, hell would freeze over first before we had to postpone a game!!

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