Printed in the Southern League Premier Division game v Cirencester Town on Good Friday 14th April 2017. We lost 2-0 in front of 780
must have been the sunshine and beer, cos it certainly
wasn't the quality of the football that had us all singing on the
packed coach back from Kettering. One of those songs 'We love you
Sliski we do' our tribute to Mr. Slough Town Chris who tragically
passed away five years to the day.
I hadn't been back to Kettering since one of our
greatest ever days supporting the Rebels or as our co-manager Neil
Baker tweeted 'the place I had my best afternoon in football.' It was
May 2014 and we were stuck in some endless play-off loop and looked
like we were heading for yet another play-off defeat. 2-0 down at
half time and you couldn't see where a goal was coming from. But boy
did the team deliver. 3 second half goals and finally promotion. My
favourite photo is our chairman Steve Easterbrook hugging Dave the Programme on the pitch. Dave Pearcy saw us get promoted but
unfortunately never saw us back home. As for the scenes back at the
Herschel Arms later with players, officials and supporters
celebrating. Let's just say many of us didn't make it to work the
You got to feel for Kettering's fall from grace.
Rockingham Road was a proper old ground and I always thought they
should have been in the Football League. In 1992 they sold it to help
save the club from extinction and this lease arrangement was always a
ticking time bomb for the club. So it proved as they eventually moved
out, sunk by debts of £1.2 million. While the club haven't given up
hope of returning home they have put in a planning application to
upgrade their frankly sparse ground they share with Burton Park Wanderers of the United Counties Division One (level 10 and too low
to enter the FA Cup).
Ground grading always confuses me with the FA
worrying far too much about an extra turnstile or a new stand that
will always be empty while turning a blind eye to terrible pitches –
pitches that really don't suit Slough Town's style of play. 3-0 to
Kettering and as Neil Baker tweeted 'If ever a game highlighted how
much better 3G is as a spectacle for fans then today was it! Terrible
pitches produce terrible games!'
Kieran was on good form and in the second half sat
in one of the home sides temporary stands which looks like its been
borrowed from a wedding hire company, singing about the Rebels
amongst some Kettering kids who were giving him an ear-bashing.
At the end of the game we all scrabbled round on
twitter to see where that left us for a place in the play-offs. It's
still in our hands but we all know that a home tie at Arbour Park
would be a massive advantage.
Back on the coach, one of the oldest supporting
Rebels John Tebbit was being serenaded with his own song. John has
been supporting the Rebels since 1954 and been writing for the
programme since the 1970's. Singing 'Where we you in '43', seemed a
It seemed rude not to finish off the day with a
drink at the Alpha Arms. Transformed from the smallest pub in Slough
in the days when my dad was alive and who seemed to spend more time
in their than at home. The old Alpha landlady was having a drink and
wasn't so sure my dad would have approved of the changes. BOOM he
would have shouted and i'm sure I saw a glass move across the table
as I raised one to him.