These articles are published in the Slough Town FC programme. The Rebels play in the National League South in a swanky new ground. I’ve been supporting Slough since the beginning of time despite now living in Brighton.

Sunday, August 23, 2009


Printed in the Southern League Midlands Division match v Barton Rovers
on Saturday 22nd August 2009. We won 5-1 in front of 226.

One councilor stood up and pronounced ‘Now I don’t like football’. Oh
here we go again, thought the supporters in the gallery, but she
continued ‘but I think this is a fabulous idea.’ Infact councilors
from every party were in agreement and wondered why this hadn’t
happened a long time ago.
So six years after being booted out of Wexham Park, years of
campaigning and dashed hopes, and plenty of work behind the scenes,
Slough Town football club were given outline planning permission to
start to re-develop the old Arbour Vale School site on the Stoke Road.
Slough Town could once again be playing in Slough.
It’s certainly been a different closed season to be the one we have
got used to where chaos and panic seem to engulf the football club. I
don’t want to pick out one person for this transformation as it’s a
team effort. We know the supporters and officials who behind the
scenes and on the match days put in the work that make this club tick.
The Supporters Trust, the people working on the website and those
working on sponsorship and the youth team - even the programme editor
does a pretty good job for such a miserable git!
But there’s no doubt that having Steve Easterbrook as our chairman has
transformed this club from basket case to one where Slough Borough
Council have taken the club seriously again. Now, in an ideal world I
would like all clubs to be supporter run. They are community assets
not play-things for some crazy egotist. You only have to look at
Grays, Cambridge and Forest Green whose Chairman’s antics have led to
teams being managerless before the season even started to see how too
much power to one man can ruin a football club.
But Steve is about as unassuming a chairman as you can get, but
everyone I have spoken to who has seen him in action at meetings says
how professional he is.
As for the new community football stadium, there will also be 81
residential dwellings (the majority of which will be affordable) and a
‘state of the art’ artificial pitch. All the external football pitches
will be made available for use by the nearby St Josephs School.
Steve said “As well as providing a new home for the club the facility
will deliver community activities which will enhance public health,
promote community engagement and provide great opportunities for young
Of course there’s still a long way to go. It is a decision in
principle only, and now more detailed proposals need to be hammered
out. Contracts will need to be signed, planning permission obtained
etc, and decision about the West Wing arts centre sorted out. BUT at
least we now have everyone onboard, have agreed it is feasible and
desirable and have decided it should progress.
If everything runs to plan, then Slough Town could be running out on a
pitch in Slough sometime early in 2012. And that will be one serious
giant footballing step forward for the club.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Wherever Next

Printed in the first home league match of the season 18th August 2009
Southern League Midlands Division v Burnham. We lost 2-0 in front of
337 people.

I must admit I had a nose bleed when I saw we had been put in the
Southern Leagues Midlands Division. No really; I had just come out of
hospital after an operation on my nose and it hadn’t stopped bleeding.
Still, fifteen new grounds for me, and camped out at Liverpool Street
station, staring at the boards waiting for the next starship to
Romulus. Look, I really don’t mind the travelling as long as we have
a successful season, even winning the odd bloody game would be nice,
but it’s getting me dizzy how many leagues we have been in over the
past decade since being booted out of the Conference. Ryman Premier,
Ryman North, Ryman South, Southern South and West and now the
Midlands. By the end of this season we will have played 119 different
league clubs in 10 years – a record? Who needs to become one of those
sad ground-hopper types - just support Slough Town.
The FA has promised to sort it out this season, and they really have
too. Clubs at our level shouldn’t really be travelling such long
Carlisle’s managing director is even arguing that the Football Leagues
bottom two divisions should be regionalized; 51 years after Division
Three North and South were scrapped. Talk like this isn’t really
surprising coming from a club that are seriously stuck out on such a
geographically limb – they are nine miles from the Scottish border and
will travel nearly 12,000 league miles over the season. The argument
is of course a financial one but also to encourage more local derbies
and more away fans – clubs rarely bring more than 300 to Brunton
Still, if you don’t agree with that, can you argue that we really need
a national non league division? Does it make sense for the part timers
of Eastbourne to be playing the part timers of Barrow? Shouldn’t there
at least be a Conference Midlands division? This would have sorted out
the mess of Worcester City playing in the Blue Square South while
Gloucester City are playing in the Blue Square North, passing each
other on the M6 every other week!
Meanwhile AFC Sudbury will be one of our league opponents this season
having lost their appeal to be put back in the Ryman league. The club
were not impressed when last season they were shoved into the Southern
Midlands, complaining of the vast increase in the travelling and the
knock on effect this had on the recruitment of players. In the summing
up to their appeal, it was stated the decision was taken in the light
of both the Ryman and Southern Leagues agreement to a re-organisation
of the respective league boundaries at the end of next season.
Time to put your bets on just where the hell we will be playing next