One of the spectators at least weekend’s Dads vs Lads match was Pam Jackson. Pam has submitted a short report, not so much about the game, but about the history of the playing field. The game does get a mention though. Pam’s report is reproduced below. We also have a gallery of nearly 100 photos from the match. The score? According to the refs notebook it was 8 – 3 to The Lads but that can’t be right, surely?
If you want to see the photos in a higher resolution you will find them on The Allington Flickr page.
ALLINGTON PLAYING FIELD 1977 – 2017
June 1977 saw the official opening of the Allington Playing Field by the oldest resident in the village at that time, Mrs Eva Burton. This was on the occasion of HM Queen’s Silver Jubilee. Mrs Burton was accompanied by Bert Palin of the Manor House, Chairman of the Parish Council and Mr Geoffrey Swallow District Councillor of Long Bennington.
A group of village residents had been fund raising for the purchase and preparation of an area of land to create a Playing Field for a year of two prior to 1977. This was carried out by raffles, dances with buffet, but mostly by dances held in the Village Hall when a local group by the name of Wells Fargo supplied the music with a sausage and beans supper at half-time. The hall was filled to capacity, the floor was so full you couldn’t do a lot of movement when dancing. Tickets sold out the moment they went on sale.
The field had undergone preparation prior to the opening by levelling the rig and furrow, preparing a cricket wicket and a football pitch. Once the field was open a Cricket Club and Football Club were formed and many a good match in both elements were enjoyed by those taking part and by the spectators. Allington won the Football League one year, and the cricketers entertained teams from afar and also travelled to return matches with those we had entertained at home.
A group of ladies, usually wives of the cricket players, took it in turns to serve the cricket teas, which became quite celebrated among the cricket league.
Football Club: There were volunteers who marked out the football pitch before matches, and others who washed the kit following a match.
Cricket Club: Members of the cricket team would prepare the wicket before matches, watering, rolling, marking, and then playing in either afternoon or evening matches.
It is so rewarding to see how the Playing Field has progressed with a play area for the children to enjoy, the ‘muga’, trees around the periphery, the wood at the far end of the field with the most wonderful view of the surrounding area.
The most disappointing factor is that we can no longer support our own cricket and football teams. Such a pity for the young lads who were enjoying a football match last Saturday against the older species.
The main fund raisers still living in the village are Brian Durant, John Taylor, Martin & Ann Jackson, Peter & Pam Jackson.