Crows on the Road
Next Up: “The Waders” of Biggleswade Town FC
Crows v Biggleswade Town FC (The Red Insure League Cup First Round)Kick Off: 19.45pm, Tuesday 16th October 2012
So after another draw, we take a break from League action and travel to a match announcer’s worst nightmare, The Red Insure league Cup 1st Round (I’m knackered just saying it) at the Carlsberg Stadium, Biggleswade…. Hang on, I must be in heaven, remember the adverts, scantily clad girls, serving my favourite tipple in a luxury flat and all my mates around… this will definitely be my most favourite trip of all time. Legal notices will be forwarded if my dreams and that of my fellow Crows are not fulfilled.
What can I tell you about the Biggleswade apart from sharing our beloved SG postcode.
Inhabited around the year of 10,000 BC, just as Bruce Forsyth was born, this is a town steeped in history. The Saxons settled here in the 5th century and the name of the town is formed from the words Biceil and Waed, the saxon name for ford (no not the car, you can’t blame these guys for the Fix Or Repair Daily cars!)
Famous residents past and present include, Charles Premrose of “aha ha ha ha ha ha” laughing policeman fame and more recently Pam Rhodes of “Songs of Praise”.
Quite an easy history to explain. Formed in 1874 as Biggleswade & District FC, the club played at the Fairfield ground, sharing it with the local cricket club. They only played friendlies until 1902. Some friendlies though, Wanderers (Later the Wolves), Woolwich Arsenal and Liverpool were all dispatched. In 1902 they joined the Biggleswade and District League and were the inaugural champions, they also won the Bedfordshire Senior Cup in the same year.
“The Biggleswade Bouys” were a very famous unit during World War 1, winning two Victoria Crosses, this was made up of the entire first team and club officials, quite simply, we salute you all.
After the War, the club joined the Northamptonshire league, which evolved into the United Counties League. They won the Bedfordshire Premier Cup in 1923 and also 1928. They remained here until after the Second World War, renaming themselves Biggleswade Town FC and joining the Spartan League. Herewith they remained until returning to the UCL in 1951. They decided to switch to the Eastern Counties League in 1955 (another league hopper team). Increasing transport costs and Mr Beeching cuts (Older Crows will remember that butcher of the railway) caused them to switch to the Eastern Counties League. During their stay in this league, they set the highest away score, hammering Newmarket Town FC 12-0. Hope this will be the score for us (I dreamt it last night, Dion Dublin scored a hatrick, so did Steve Bull and Jez Izod scored six!)
They returned to the UCL in 1963 and in 1976 finished bottom of the pile and were relegated. Four years in Division 1 with mid table places throughout prompted “The Waders” to transfer yet again to another league and the South Midlands League, another relegation followed in 1983. In 1987 they stormed the First Division by 18 points and were promoted back to the Premier League.
In 2006 the club left the Fairfield Road ground to share with Bedford United and Valerio (Italian influence and free pasta me thinks). A brand new stadium was built on their old patch, to be named “The Carlsberg Stadium”, I’m loving this team already. Success followed very quickly. They hammered Looton 3-2 in the 2008 Bedfordshire Premier Cup and in 2009 won promotion to the Southern League.
Mid table finishes followed, but “The Waders” have high hopes for this season and are one of the front runners for promotion……But this is the cup!
Their Season So Far
In the league so far, it’s a 4-3-2, but this is the cup, so anything can happen and probably will.
Last time out they were hammered 4-0 by Ashford Town (Middlesex), at least they did get to the correct ground. Yes Crows fans, the rumours are correct, this intrepid reported relied on his Sat Nav for Saturday’s game and typed Burnham FC into said computerised system. I ended up at Burnham, but the Ramblers of Essex instead…. So far I have been hammered for this by Tom Malins, Endo, Mr Atfield and my 11 year old step son! Not to forget Neil, who called me a Wally (at least that’s what I think he said!)
Ones to Watch
Between the sticks, I introduce Michael McEntegart. Mikey is an Australian international, OMG! Excellent shot stopper and has a great voice too (X Factor Australia, Mike…your secret is out) Former clubs include Everton, Hemel Hempstead and Welling United.
Club Captain, Steve Gentle has a wealth of experience. He joined the club as a striker but was converted to a defender. Passionate, Committed and great in the tackle, the “gentle”man lists Bedford Town and Cambridge City as former clubs.
As Forwards go, Jamie Arlick will give us all sorts of problems. Signed from Hitchin Town, this lad does know where the goal is. Tracked by a host of football league clubs and conference ones too, a real coup signing for “The Waders”.
They’ve Also Played For Us (New Feature!)
Well, our Kaan will come up against a familiar face in the form of Arin Fehmi. Brotherly love will be put aside for 90 minutes for a very interesting clash between the Bro’s, if both start. I have to say, I do miss Arin, he was a committed and quality defender during his time with the Crows and as facebook friends, he has also been winding me up about my Burnham faux pas!
Chris Nunn. Chris joined “The Waders” in November 2006 saving them from relegation in his first season. He delivered the club their most successful season in 2009, capturing the Molten Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division (glad we are out of that league ) championship and a quarter final place in the FA Vase.
How To Get There
A fairly straightforward route for this trip. Take the A505 until you reach the first Baldock junction. At the top of the slip road, follow the signs for Baldock/Letchworth until you reach the Whitehorse Crossroads. Turn right here and follow the road until you reach the A1 Round-a-bout. Join the A1(m) until you get to the first Biggleswade junction. Come off here, the ground is then signposted on the left. 14.6 miles and approx 35 minutes. Just don’t ask for Jez’s Sat Nav!
Match Day Information
Adult: £8.00 – 18 to 60 years of age.
Concession: £5.00 – 16 to 18 years of age and over 60 years of age.
Children under 16 years of age free entry when accompanied by a paying adult.
Programme included with admission subject to availability.