Tag Archives: Tottenham Hotspur

The End of the War in Europe and Church Gresley (5)

A few days after I finished writing this blog post, I was wandering across the Internet when I came across an auction webpage called “The Saleroom” which featured a copy of my programme but in much, much, better condition:

The programme had no autographs but did have some team changes written on it, in pencil, of course:

The first one revealed that the RAF goalkeeper may not have been Corporal Timms but “Hardwick England”

I have taken this to refer to Ken Hardwick who played for Rossington Colliery, Doncaster Rovers (308 appearances), Scunthorpe United (96 appearances) and Barrow (12 appearances). He never played for England but he did suffer one of the cruellest and shameful things ever experienced by a footballer. It occurred in a letter which he received out of the blue about an England appearance. In 1955, he was invited by the FA to play for England, but it was for the Under 23 team and George was, by then, 30 years old. Well, done the Football Association, always with their eye on the ball! Here’s Ken, in his younger days:

Alternatively, the best fit for “Hardwick England” might conceivably be George Hardwick of Middlesbrough and Oldham. He had 13 England caps, some as captain, but he was a left full back, rather than a goalkeeper. Here he is, on a cigarette card which he has autographed in later life:

It’s difficult to imagine, though, that Griffiths of Manchester City would not have changed position to accommodate somebody as important as George Hardwick, ex-Captain of England. Having said that, most professional outfield players would be able to play as goalkeeper in a charity game without too many problems. Perhaps George was just amused by the idea, so he had a go in the atmosphere of universal happiness that must have been in the air for all of that First Day of Peace in Europe.

In actual fact, George Hardwick was considered Middlesbrough’s greatest ever player and they have a statue of him outside their stadium:

Near “Thompson” something has been written and it appears to me to be “Hall Spurs”:

This may be Albert E B. Hall, an outside right, who, between 1935-1947, had appeared 81 times for Tottenham Hotspur, or Spurs, as they are better known by their fans, scoring 22 goals.

It may be Fred W. Hall who appeared 23 times  between 1944-1946.

It may be G Willie Hall, an inside right who managed 376 appearances, with 45 goals scored, between 1932-1944. He was actually a fairly local man, born in Newark in Nottinghamshire.

It may have been Jack Hall. This is the least likely because all of Jack’s 67 appearances between 1936-1946 came as a goalkeeper.

Overall though, this is a singular lesson in the value of including an initial!

Near ‘Chapman’ there is something written. If this programme was ever owned by a little boy, the little boyish handwriting says “lost 4-7” but this is far from definite in my mind. Other figures are written in near both Carter and Doherty but I really don’t know what they are:

What I need, of course, is a newspaper report, but that’s easier said than done!

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Filed under Aviation, Bomber Command, Derby County, Football, History, Personal

Heil Hitler Episode 4

Nowadays, it is quite difficult to understand why people did not stand up to Hitler and the Nazi party in larger numbers.  The truth is, though, that it is a very difficult to deal with situations which are evil beyond belief. A little bit of cooking the books and stealing small sums of money from the Church Accounts is one thing, but these men were Satan’s Inner Council. They did not hesitate to kill people in thousands, if not hundreds of thousands. If not millions. If not tens of millions:

belsen

Or just one at a time:

one

No matter how evil or how terrifying these crazies became, though, there was still no shortage of brave Germans willing to stand up and be counted.
Look at these Germans here. At first glance, everybody is Heil Hitlering and Seig Heiling, and singing the company song:

We love you Adolf, we do,
We love you Adolf, we do,
We love you Adolf, we do,
O Adolf, we love you!

But look very carefully.  This is the football crowd at the England-Germany game at White Hart Lane, the home of Tottenham Hotspur, in December 1935 . A number of people appear not to be joining in with the general joy and merriment. There are about ten of them altogether. When you look more carefully, they seem, perhaps, to have all different motives for their non-participation:

german-football-supporters-giving-the-nazi-salute-during-the-international-match-against-england-at-white-hart-lane-london-december-1935

Disgust with their fellow citizens. Unwillingness to join in. Curiosity at the situation.  Puzzlement at why some other people are not joining in. Puzzlement at who is taking the photograph:

close up mny dissds

Apparently, then, no one single motive. But at least one of them, if not more, have the purposeful expression of a good man who has resolved not to do nothing any longer:

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And as well as good, these are brave men. Brave anti-Nazi German men. We tend to forget nowadays, but there were lots of them. And brave anti-Nazi German women too. And boys. And girls.

Sophie Scholl who has more schools named after her in Germany than Franz Beckenbauer:

scholl

Her brother Hans:

HansScholl

Not everybody follows the rest. Not everybody wants to be evil. Some people will make their own protest. It may not be anything particularly spectacular, but it may well be extremely brave.

As we shall see next time.

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Criminology, History, Politics