Slow Mo September because frankly since Newcastle it has been slow motion for the last few days.
Those stairs were horrendous for those of us who chose to use them rather than cheating by using the lift. For some bizarre reason, when I think of Newcastle away, climbing up those stairs is never the first thing that pops up in my mind. Trying to get 3,000 people through 2 turnstiles with 5 minutes to go before kick off – that’s what I normally remember.
To top it all off, for those of us who did the St James’s stairs without stopping for a breather, when I got to the top it was like a bloody sauna. Couldn’t flipping breathe. The least they could have done was taken a leaf out of the Great North Run and had people with those foil blankets, cold water and maybe a few oxygen cylinders on tap. Flipping nothing …. apart from a load of drunks. Even a massive cheer for those who reached the top would have been welcome. Nothing.
Yeah, Gary Neville and professional Scouser Carragher apparently did a race or something, and one of them made it up to the top in less than a minute. They’d have been better off enjoying the whole matchday experience and trying it then. Putting themselves on an even keel with the average away dayer by going round a load of pubs first knocking back 10 pints of Double Maxim or whatever the lager drinkers imbibe now, finishing with a couple of rounds of Jagerbombs or port if they have any, then a bacon cheese burger, with onions covered in tomato ketchup from outside the ground…. and THEN trying to get up those stairs. THEN they could have drawn a comparison that I would have been interested in.
You may jest – but those of you who want the ground to be developed – beware. If they start even thinking of copying anything like that, I’ll be straight on them demanding full on facilities for the old, decrepit and intoxicated. Never mind a lift, I want fancy shiny moving walkways like they have in airports. Mind you, if Leeds City Council had any say in it, they’d be demanding a bloody cycle path to go alongside it. St James’s Park might look good on the outside, but the view is crap, you can’t see the goal properly, sober or tiddly. Think of the fans, we have rights as well – old fans matter!
As for Fulham. I sent a few feelers out for a quick branch health survey after that penalty shootout and then that long, long journey home, resulting in most of us not seeing sight of the bed before 3am.
I’m pleased to report Mr Smythe finally saw a game at Craven Cottage at the 5th attempt. The Chairman similarly enjoyed a balti pie during the game and found the bus afterwards. Sonia managed to keep all her bones in one piece and Mad Max actually went to a game with an intact pair of glasses, and got home with the same pair still in one piece.
Proof of Life?
Here it is- I declare these last two games casualty free ( as far as I know anyway) and therefore a pretty good result. Roll on a nice home tie for a place in the quarter finals. Full house at Fortress ER again.
Monthly Branch Meeting – held at the Londesborough Club, face to face – hurrah!
Our first branch meeting of the 2021/22 season started with us raising a glass to Top Cat Cooper who sadly has passed away this weekend. He was a fine player, integral to the Revie side. RIP.
Minutes from the last monthly branch meeting in December 2020 were reviewed and passed accordingly. Minutes from the LUSC exec meetings were read out (one zoom meeting and one normal meeting – hurrah!). As the zoom meeting minutes were a little out of date regarding the information re the new Leeds United Away Ticket Policy, there was little discussion. The new policy, in summary, is better than the one that was originally put forward in the SAB meeting, but not really good enough. It was acknowledge that wherever Leeds drew the cut off line, it was bound to piss off somebody. If they left it was it has been for the last few seasons, the newbies would just be whingeing more and more. Many people in the branch were up to 99 /98 matches, so just missed out unfortunately. Some people didn’t think that the 2015/16 went go back far enough and that loyalty should be based on how long you have been following the Club. The fact that the free for all sales in the last two seasons for the larger allocations had also meant that people had failed to get a ticket was also a factor. There was surprise that the PL max allocation was 3,000. The Secretary pointed out that no home club wants to be outsung by Leeds United away fans, so why would they want to let in more Leeds fans than necessary. It was pointed out that it was different in the Cup games, as these were bound by FA rules re allocation, NOT the PL. Therefore more chance to get a Cup away ticket, should Leeds be bothered to enter a proper competitive side and not pretend and go through the motions like the last few seasons. John Mann was welcomed by Chrissie as the new Chairman of the LUSC. We will endeavour to send out the LUSC exec minutes to all branch members in the email mailout this season. We will have a purge of the email list, so if you haven’t given us your new email address or renewed, you will be deleted from it. In other LUSC news, the Club have said that the LUSC will be able to sponsor Kalvin Phillips again this season, and the fixture lists will proudly be announcing that again. The LUSC have been sponsoring Kalvin since 2015 and hope to continue to do that. There are no details yet whether there will be bat flu restrictions at games. Freedom Day has been and gone. Hopefully, seeing as the matches are outside in the open air and at least 10,000 fans got into Wembley by storming the gates and didn’t have to show any negative results or QR codes to get in, then we won’t have to. The posh people at Wimbledon were sat closer together than we are at ER and for longer (if they watched the men’s final – not in the ladies as that was over before we knew it – only joking it was an hour and a half this year), and as far as we know, all those “pilot test events” did not result in a massive increase in cases, hospitalisations or deaths. Whatever you think about the bat flu – I do not want a “Papers Please” society which basically deprives us of our freedom and liberties. This is not a George Orwell novel, nor is it 1940s post war Berlin.
Thanks to those who have already filled in their renewal forms. You MUST fill in a form every year, I’m afraid, even if you don’t have to pay for anything. We are still waiting for fixture lists (which will be out of date as always as SkyTVisf**kings**t will muck up the fixtures every 6 weeks), so when we get those, we will send one out with your membership card in the post for all those who enclosed a stamped addressed envelope. For those that didn’t, should we be in a position to run a bus, you will get yours on the bus, or at a monthly branch meeting.
Until we know how many tickets we are going to get, we will not know if we can run a bus. Which relies on Leeds United actually putting the away tickets up for sale, the Leeds United ticketing website NOT imploding and the branch actually being able to order tickets. Everything will have to be done at the last minute. If we have to share a coach we will, but if we don’t get enough tickets, we won’t be running a bus unfortunately. We cannot afford to run half empty buses. If we do run a bus and you book a place, if you do not turn up, we will charge you for your place and if you are unreliable again, we won’t bother booking you on.
Ryan Edmondson Sponsorship
We are still waiting for the Club to come back to us re sponsoring Ryan, even though he is out on loan at Fleetwood now. They are aware we want to renew it. The MPO will email the Club again this week.
Thanks to everyone who participates in the (fixed) football card. Please continue if at all possible. We will look to arranging another raffle once we get enough stuff to raffle off.
Stan Bowles Calendar in Aid of Alzheimers Research.
Plans are now afoot for the weekend of the Everton game. Manhattans on Friday night, for the Centenary Whites do, Stan Bowles Calendar Stand outside The Peacock on match day, and then Sunday is the Bowls event at the Black Swan. See link below. It’s all in a good cause, Alzheimers is a terrible disease, please contribute. And I know it’s nothing to do with Leeds United but QPR are STILL not decided about naming a stand (they’ve got 4 of them!) after their greatest player. Bit shit really, seeing as he is their most famous player – but what can you do? They should really try do it before he dies as well. We will keep trying to gently encourage them our end.
These are the links below for the Manhattans event and the justgiving page if you can’t attend
Another 24 hours on (it’s lasted at least twice as long as our new badge design!) and the Elitist 6 have all given up the ghost. Now the recriminations and retributions are in full pelt. With SkyTVisf**kings**t now asking what the punishment should be. Notably, all their guests have said that any docking of points and relegation to a lower league will “only harm the fans”. In other words only harm SkyTVisf**kings**t and the other broadcasters as they’ll have to go to more Championship grounds more often.
Me, I see nothing more fitting than public humiliation in stocks being paraded round the streets, finished with a nice bit of old fashioned public flogging with the obligatory cat o nine tails. And that’s just to start with.
Boris is going on about a shake up of rules and relook at the “fit and proper test”. Well, we all know how that is going to end with Rick Parry and his bezza mates in charge. They’ll just suck up to them, bit of lip service, call in Ernst & Young who will do an audit at great expense for their consultation, and decide it’s all ok anyway, and tell Boris that’s there’s nothing here to see. They’ll get away scott free if the decision is left to Boris – he doesn’t even like football.
Jokes aside, the only thing that these owners know is money.
1)They need to be hit hard with a fine and then that fine needs to be redistributed between the clubs in the lower leagues – not to the FA, ensuring it passes down to where it is needed. With a guarantee that the financial hit not be passed onto match going fans.
2) 15 point deduction at the start of next season.
3) To give back to the match going fans, all tickets in the PL to be no more than a top price of £50 (in the best seats) per game and away fans to go back to being allocated 10% of ground capacity for 48 hour selling window at £20, any unsold to go back to the home team to be sold at £20.
4) All teams involved to be forced to start at the initial rounds of the League Cup and the FA Cup, playing their first team players for the next 5 years. Again, ensuring that any gate receipts will be shared amongst the lower league divisions and serving as a reminder of where football actually started.
5) Transfer embargo from now til the start of season 2023/24.
6) Salary cap in the Premier League to be set at a maximum of £100,000 at week. No one needs £5 million a year.
There’s not much news for the April 2021 update as yet, seeing as Bojo and the Premier League Circus still haven’t made up their minds about letting us go back to sitting outside in the fresh air in an outdoor stadium for little under two hours, but will be happy for you to be dragged round inside White Rose / Meadowhell by the missus for 3 hours along with everyone else in a week or so.
Monthly Branch Meeting
Hopefully this will be the penultimate branch meeting forced to be held by zoom. Thanks to all who attended (with or without a big glass of red wine).
There was no LUSC exec meeting in the latter part of March as Kalvin was playing for En-ger-land but there is a Player Of the Month vote for Thursday 8th April. There haven’t been any SAB meetings either but questions have been put to Leeds for the next agenda (see AOB). The MPO won £100 in the last (big) 250 draw though – which has gone towards successfully helping the rust bucket, which is the car, pass it’s MOT for the last time – honest. If anyone does want an 08 plate Ford Ka with an ABS light which reassuringly goes on and off intermittently – please get in touch, usual channels.
Player Of The Month
Thank you all for your March player votes vie email and facebook. This months votes at the Exec will go to Dallas and Raphinha.
Eric Ware RIP.
Thanks to everyone who took the time to remember Eric with their stories for the tribute and for The Secretary’s speech at his service. Eric’s coffin was fantastic as was the wreath in the shape and colours of our home strip. We are keeping in touch with Joan and have been to see her. She is doing OK, as well as can be expected, she would like us to pass on her thanks to everyone for their kind words.
The raffle will be drawn before the Citeh game on Saturday by The Chairman and Dave Rowson. Thanks to everyone who has taken part and good luck to you all.
We’re Not Leeds, We Are Leeds
Congrats to Dave Rowson on his new (first) book. It covers our European games and promises to be an excellent read, bringing back memories of the Glory European Nights / Days and the not so glorious mornings afterwards, severe steaming hangovers, complete mind blocks, terrible flashbacks and prison cells…. Various branch members have supplied Dave with some “select” pictures from the old days, as has Dougie Kaye (they are definitely HIS photos!) and Dave has procured some from other sources as well. For those of you who don’t / can’t remember those days, it will be a useful guide to help you fill in the blanks. For the ones who are too young to have been there – this is how it used to be before cheap flights. Think yourselves lucky that if / when we do get back into Europe, you’re never going to be sat on a coach for 19 hours just to watch Leeds.
Stan Bowles Calendar
It was decided at the meeting that the branch will support Dave Rowson with his Stan Bowles calendar in aid of Alzheimers Research. Dave is donating some of the money from his book to this very worthwhile cause. He is also going to attempt to raise funds for Alzheimers Research at match days by having a “Stand For Stan” where people will be invited to have their photo taken with the calendar for a donation with a purpose made photo op stand somewhere near ER. Details have yet to be confirmed, but, as I am sure most of you will agree (especially following the “Finding Jack Charlton” documentary), Alzheimers is a terrible disease and research is very much needed into finding some treatment for this horrible disease which robs so many people, and their loved ones, of their lives and, just as importantly, their time. Life is short, time is precious. We will also try to support the Maverick team and Potton Accountancy in their efforts to get a stand named after Stan Bowles at QPR. He was after all, their greatest player, and if Leeds United can have the John Charles, Norman Hunter, Don Revie and Jack Charlton Stands, then other clubs should be making an effort, and recognising their history and their great players too.
We say goodbye to our dear friend Eric Ware on Wednesday 17th March 2021.
At 74 years of age, Eric was the longest standing season ticket holder in our branch. He would have been 75 in May and we are told had had his season ticket for 40 years. He had been a Leeds United supporter for over 62 years. Eric started watching Leeds in 1950s and he was one of the few who had the privilege of watching the great John Charles play. Eric was in the crowd of 57,892 people at Elland Road, the biggest attendance at our beloved ground, in 1967 in the cup game against Sunderland.
Eric has been a member of the LUSC all this time. He was one of the original Harrogate Whites who travelled on the old Pynes buses, back in the day. He travelled home and away all over the country and saw us play in Paris, Salonika and made both Fairs Cup Finals in Hungary and Italy, against Ferencvaros and Juventus.
In the days before music and merriment on the bus, Eric was the bus bingo caller. He was famous for his cheerful turns of phrase, commonly raising the excitement of the prize by saying “Are you sweating at the back yet?” He was also famous for his rendition of The Scaffold’s song 2 Days Monday. A song that he continued to sing on the way to and from ER with Lesley Hope, Jane Taylor and Steve Mawtus in the car.
Here are some of the reflections of Eric’s travelling history:
Dave Rowson recollects:
My favourite Eric memory was a night match at Everton on Pynes coaches. 13 of us on it I think as towards end of the Adamson Out era. Pretty sure Andy Logan and Charley Megginson will have been on. We were struggling to find the ground, scousers had nicked their own floodlights and only had them on stand roof. We ended up wrong side of ground. Bus driver stopped to ask a police inspector who was stood on his own. He said you go park up, get them off I will walk them round to away end. One copper he did have his big stick thing. Everton was a little bit rough back then. By time we got about a street we had all mingled into the Everton fans on pavements so we didn’t stand out except Eric who was walking behind the copper down middle of road in his own personal police escort. If only we had cameras back then
Andy Logan has added:
I remember it well after the game they opened the gates to let us out we weren’t going nowhere without a police escort so they gave us a couple of plod Everton were jumping on and off the buses trying to slash you luckily I was wearing a donkey jacket lol
Geoff Howarth writes:
I first remember Eric from the very early days late 60s mainly on away days..before the pub stops.only on motorway services..use to speak with him quiet abit b4 his retirement…as he kept the towns streets clean….always talked about the last game n the next one. He went on all the buses that went from town n Murgys where we had all the windows put through at forest..n not enough to fill a bus so went on a mini bus to palace with 15 on it..
Karen Webb (Abbott) writes :
This might be a little too long a tale to tell. Paris May 1975. Early morning
My brothers Gordon, Stephen and myself and a couple of others who I can’t remember got off the bus at the Place de la Concorde and set off walking the long walk up the Champs Elysee to the Arc de Triomphe. Along the way meeting other Leeds fans, one of which was Eric. Eric and my eldest brother had been going on Pynes to watch Leeds a lot longer than myself so knew each other well. Eric went into his usual mode of remember this game, remember that to my brother. By the time we reached the Arc Eric had regaled to us every game in the run up to the Final !! We then decided to go to the Eiffel Tower. It was across the river. We found a bridge to cross and set off across it. I looked back across the bridge to see Eric placing one foot on the Bridge and then jumping back off. I asked him what was wrong. The bridge was a wooden bridge where you could see the river below through the slats and Eric wouldn’t cross it as he said it wasn’t safe when you could see the river so he went off to find a more sturdier bridge. Meanwhile we carried on to the Tower. Once there it was packed and we had joined in with other fans and were quite a group. It must have been about 2 hours since we crossed the bridge and we were getting concerned because we hadn’t seen Eric. I then went to take a group photo under the tower. Everyone was all together posing for the photo when over my brothers shoulder a head popped up as I snapped the picture. Eric had found us. From there we all wandered aimlessly round Paris. We got to the ground and Eric wasn’t sat with us so off he went. After the game we all trundled back to the bus, thoroughly fed up and set off for home. We had to go to Zeebrugee to get the ferry as the French at Calais had decided to go on strike. No one was saying much, apart from Eric, who was sat next to me telling me how we were robbed and detailing the game to me as if I hadn’t been there!!! I think he was the only person on that Coach ride to the ferry who spoke. He had fantastic recall of every game. He was Leeds through and through and will be sorely missed.
Dave Poole recollects:
Eric was happy to talk to anyone and everyone, and often a five minute chat at a chance meeting in the street would end up a half an hour conversation.
Eric was proud to be a member of the Harrogate & District LUSC and often he and Joan were the first ones to return their renewal forms, always with a stamped addressed envelope. He always attended the monthly branch meetings on the first Sunday of the month and enjoyed chatting with Mally and Dave Jewitt before The Chairman, Charley would knock on the table to officially start the meeting. He once won the LUSC Sponsor’s trip to Thorp Arch and had a fantastic time at the training session, showing the players how to play proper football. At the following branch meeting, he told everyone how pleased he was that he got to see them train.
Eric will be sadly missed by Joan, who he has spent many many happy years with since they met whilst working at the old Robert Hurst factory. We shared a joke only a few years ago that it was about time he made Joan an honest woman, and then Lesley, Jane and Lai could go out and buy a hat. He was so looking forward to seeing us play in the Premier League, at least he saw us on the up, with Mr Bielsa at the helm, and although he didn’t see the final result against Southampton, at least he saw Patrick Bamford score to put us 1 -0 up.
The link for Eric’s service is www.obitus.com . Username : vigi8031 Password : 788799
A whole year of no football! Not really an anniversary that you want to celebrate. Here’s the March 2021 update. Sorry, there wasn’t a February update, we’ve been a bit busy.
Monthly Branch Meeting
We are continuing to hold the branch meetings by zoom unfortunately, but hopefully we will get a face to face one soon. Nothing much is going on at present because we can’t go to games but we are still keeping in regular touch with as many branch members as physically possible. The LUSC are also in the same predicament with being forced to hold meetings by zoom as well. We remain Always Leeds, Always Loyal, but as for getting people to games, that’s something we can only wish for. As usual, all branch members who are on the email list, should be receiving the minutes from the LUSC execs and any comments or matters arising from the minutes should be received by The Secretary to take to the next exec meeting by Weds 6pm of that week.
Player Of The Month
Thanks to everyone for regularly feeding back for the monthly Player of The Month either via facebook or email. Hopefully we will be able to see our LUSC Player of The Year being awarded his trophy by the end of the season in person.
Eric Ware RIP
As most of you are aware, it’s Eric’s funeral on Weds 17th March, this is the link:
www. obitus.com viewing time 12.56 – 1.45pm
username: vigi8031 password 788799
There will be a branch presence from The Secretary, the MPO and The Chairman, and former Secretary Dave Rowson as well as some very dear friends. If anyone wishes to share any stories for me to add on the tribute page, please get in touch as soon as. Thanks for the information so far. Eric was a lovely man. Our thoughts and prayers are with Joan. Once again, thanks go to Lesley Hope and Jane Taylor for all their help.
Raffle tickets are still available from either Andy Yates or The Secretary. We will be looking to do the draw at the earliest opportunity, permitted by the lockdown rules.
“We’re not Leeds, we ARE Leeds”
Dave Rowson’s first book will be available very soon. It was officially announced in the programme for the Chelsea game. As soon as it is available, we will liaise with Dave to see how we can support it.
Branch Sponsorship of Ryan Edmondson
We have had no further information from the sponsorship department regarding our sponsorship of Ryan. As far as we are concerned he is still out on loan and doing rather well at Northampton Town. Hopefully he will bag a few more goals and keep them up this season and come back and fight for his place in the first team at the end of the season. The MPO has asked Angus Kinnear if they will consider rolling over the costs of sponsorship to next season as a gesture of good will given the unprecedented times we have dealt with in the last 12 months.
The MPO has also asked the Club if they will consider allowing the transfer of season tickets to family members of those who we have sadly lost during the pandemic. As soon as there is more information on this, I will let people know. I think it would be a very kind gesture on the Club’s part if they did allow these long standing seats to be transferred over to relatives as a lasting memory and acknowledgement of their long and dedicated loyal support.