Friday, 27 February 2009
Nostagic shots of Southampton
Jessica Hart's latest posting (Thoughts and Ramblings), which mentioned an incident on a chain ferry, has prompted me to me to dig out some old shots of Southampton that I'd scanned from transparencies a while back. They're on my linked Flickr site if you want to see them. They're basically shots of the old Floating Bridge and two pictures relating to the 1976 triumph of Southampton FC over Manchester United in the FA Cup Final. I'm not a football fan, but it was impossible not to get caught up in the general atmosphere of euphoria that gripped the city, and I well remember the seething crowd of easily 100,000 that thronged around the Civic Centre, and how someone illicitly climbed up the clocktower and 'conducted' some cheers before removal. And everyone turned out to see the Saints team tour the city by bus. The victory depended on an odd goal from a young player, Bobby Stokes I think. I bought a scarf and a commemorative mirror, both long gone now, although my teddy bear Teddy Tinkoes is still dressed in Soton colours. I seem to remember that one of the team, Rodrigues, took over a pub in Totton and with my friends at the time we went down there to check it out. Southampton was very sport-orientated in the 1970s, cricket as much as football, and the players and managers were very accessable, almost household characters. I met Kevin Keegan once at The Dell; my girlfriend at the time knew him slightly. But the venue for meeting a well-known cricketer, Barry Richards, a Millbrook club, was a scene of embarrassment for me later in 1976, when the spiteful whining old codger at the door thought I was under-age and wouldn't let me in. He made a huge fuss. Perhaps I was a little brash. My girlfriend had to vouch for me, and guarantee my good behaviour. I was 24 at the time. I wonder what he would have thought of demure Lucy Melford?