Could it be true, are we really heading back to some sense of normality? No restrictions in the clubhouse, no ground capacity restrictions or limitations that have put the future of so many non-league clubs in jeopardy over the past 16 months – We cannot afford to be complacent, but latest news from the government gives us every reason to be optimistic, and every reason to get very excited about the return of live football at The Meadow TONIGHT.
After the sheer euphoria of England’s victory in midweek football is back to being the game we all love with live crowds, excitement and a sense of unity that no other industry or political party could ever deliver. Tonight, we welcome a Wycombe Wanderers XI to The Meadow for our first pre-season fixture of the new campaign, a first chance to see how the players have been fairing over the lockdown period and keeping themselves fit. I know the players and management cannot wait to play in front of a crowd again, we have not done that here at The Meadow since the FA Trophy fixture with Whyteleafe back in October 2020.
If ever there was a reminder of how vulnerable football clubs can be, Whyteleafe are a classic example. When we last met, they were a very strong side pushing for promotions, since then they have been forced to resign from their league following issues with the landlords of their home ground. We wish our friends at Whyteleafe well and hope they are able to get back on their feet very soon, a great club that deserves better.
The clubhouse will also be open tonight, with table service. A big thank you to everyone that has used The Chess Suite as their base for watching the England matches on the big screen, the atmosphere has been nothing short of electric. During the last two England games there has been a raffle to raise funds towards our new scoreboard, around £350 raised from that, a great effort and much appreciated. If anyone is attending the Euro 2021 final on Sunday at the Chess Suite and would like to donate a prize for the final raffle, it would be much appreciated. As a reminder, even if you are not in a financial position to help, it would be hugely appreciated if everyone reading this could help by sharing the GoFundMe page on your own social media and/or with your friends and family. The link to the page can be found here: https://gofund.me/b0a8cfe5 – Thank you with your support in this.
Elsewhere, our club historian, Giles Stevenson, has made use of lockdown to make superb progress in pulling together all the match playing statistics from our club’s history. He has all the league results & all the cup results completed and is now trying to complete the records of all goal scorers and appearances, which he has been able to do by going through old programmes and copies of old Bucks Examiner reports, both online and in the local library, but he still has around 100 games missing the goal scorers, and many more of the 5,100 games logged (league, cup & friendly matches) still need players appearances completed. Giles is now looking for some assistance, if you have got any Chesham programmes that you no longer require, or pictures, articles etc he would happily accept them, if no longer required. He has at least one programme from almost every season played going back to 1950 and a few older ones before that going back as far as 1921. However, he is still missing many programmes for the records from every season including the last season played, with no completed season of programmes amongst the 1400 he has put together so far. If you can help Giles with this mammoth task, we would love to hear from you, he can be contacted via myself at email@example.com or, when not at Wembley cheering England on, he can generally be found around the clubhouse on a matchday – Including tonight generally with a pint pot in front of him!
On a sadder note, I know many of you have been enquiring about the funeral arrangements for club stalwart, Don Flitney. The funeral will take place at Chilterns Crematorium, Amersham in the Milton Chapel at 3.15pm. on the 19th.July, followed by a reception at the football club. The request is for no flowers please, there will instead be a donation request on the order of service.
What a fantastic weekend we have in prospect, please come along early to the game tonight as we hope to have a good crowd eager to see the return of live football at our club; myself and the board are very excited to welcome you back and are looking forward to what should be a great game of football. What better way to start a weekend that might, just might, finally see football come home.
A final thank you for all your magnificent support over the past months, the words of encouragement and support shown have kept us going, whilst the response to season tickets has been magnificent with around 150 now sold for the season ahead. Tonight, we begin a new era, let us hope for no more false starts.
Take Care – Stay safe