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1882 Makes My Grandad Pogo

5 min read
by The Fighting Cock

After attending and enjoying the 1882 experience at the NextGen series game against Barcelona last year, I vowed to return. When it was announced that our Under 21 Semi Final against Everton, was to be an 1882 event, I immediately contacted my 70 year old granddad and persuaded him to come along. My granddad has […]

483b07e2bc0111e2a3b222000a9f1696_7After attending and enjoying the 1882 experience at the NextGen series game against Barcelona last year, I vowed to return. When it was announced that our Under 21 Semi Final against Everton, was to be an 1882 event, I immediately contacted my 70 year old granddad and persuaded him to come along.

My granddad has had a pretty tough year with his wife getting cancer, his son going through a messy divorce and a court case. To be fair I haven’t helped the stress by being a general “pain in the arse grandson” by falling out with his daughter, my mum, therefore as 1882 is more than just about the football, I decided to use it to build some bridges.

Normally my grandfather and I attend around four home games a season, but this year for one reason or another we’ve not been able to. This Semi Final offered us the perfect excuse to soak up the White Hart Lane vibe, get a game under our belts and expose an old school fan to a new footballing movement.

Rather like Spurs’ end of the season though, our fate was in other peoples hands.

First of all we had to rely on the NHS to run on time, as my Nan was in for a check-up that would hopefully signal the all-clear, and then we would have to rely on another institution the TFL.

Arriving at his house for 4pm, I expected to have an anxious wait in front of me, thankfully though I heard the key in the door at 4.30pm. As they bustled into the house, smiles spread across their face, I knew the NHS had bestowed upon them good news.

“Right then haven’t we got a football match to get to?” My granddad said.

Fifteen minutes later we were at the station, sprinting towards the train tickets in hand. Things were going very well, the omens were good.

We arrived at White Hart Lane 15 minutes before kick off, and followed the steward’s advice to buy our tickets at turnstile six.

“We will be able to sit in block 16 won’t we?” I enquired anxiously.

The steward told me not to worry, but as we entered into the stadium my heart sunk. We were on the wrong side of the tunnel. I walked down to the front and explained to the steward that I had brought my granddad to the game to sit in block 16 and take him back to the good old days.

“Sorry sir it’s allocated seating; now go and take your seat please.” A helpful member of staff informed me, but I refused to give up.

We had come for an 1882 night, I didn’t want to let my granddad down.

The next steward I recounted my story to was more understanding but he also claimed there was nothing that could be done. Accepting my fate but refusing to be downhearted, I resolved to participate in the 1882 event from a far.

Taking my seat I broke into an impromptu “Oh When the Spurs,” the gentleman to my left, obviously moved by my singing took up the song also, before we knew it, we were having a duet. A few moments later I was tapped on the shoulder:

“Follow me” the understanding steward said.

My heart lifted, grabbing my granddad, we followed as quickly as possible. The excitement was building in me, it was like walking down the stairs on Christmas morning, we were being ushered to Block 16.

When we arrived at the Block, I thanked the steward again and again, barely stopping myself from giving him a big kiss. With the great news regarding my Nan, persuading my granddad to come, and making it into Block 16, despite being told it was impossible, it was already a fantastic day and the game had barely started.

What followed in the next 90 minutes are up there with some of the greatest experiences I have had at the Lane.

The crowd was not as big as the Barca game and not as noisy as the one at Underhill for the Arsenal game, but it wasn’t about numbers or decibel levels; it was about Spurs and THAT rainbow and THAT camera man, added brilliantly to the experience. In one moment of semi silence I heard my granddad singing:

“We got our own arch, we got our own arch, we’re Tottenham Hotspurs, we got our own arch.”

Inspired by his words I added my fog horn voice to his song and it got the rendition it deserved. The night continued in the same theme, brilliant songs made up on the spot by people enjoying supporting their club.

I will always remember the 10 minute rendition of “Oh when the Spurs”, “The Scousers nicked our rainbow”, “We got our own arch”, “Wenger wants his camera back” and seeing my granddad overcome his advancing years to pogo because he loves Tottenham. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so much at a football game.

On the way home elated by the result, the atmosphere and having taken part in another 1882 event, I asked my granddad his opinion of the whole experience.

As always he caught me off guard.

“I was at the Crewe Alexandra game where we won 13-2 and tonight I had the same amount of fun as I did then. It was brilliant.”

Personally I think that sums up everything that The Fighting Cock and 1882 are trying to do for football and Tottenham. Win, lose, or draw, making football an experience and a great day out.

Because of what you guys started with that Charlton FA Youth Cup game, I was able to take my granddad to a football match which reminded him of how much fun he had at a game that took place on the 3rd February 1960.

I don’t know how many more opportunities I will get to have a night like that with him, so from the bottom of my heart thank you, thank you very much.

[author name=”Ian Bradley” avatar=”” twitter=”ianbraders” tag=”IanBradley[/linequote]

All views and opinions expressed in this article are the views and opinions of the writer and do not necessarily represent the views of The Fighting Cock. We offer a platform for fans to commit their views to text and voice their thoughts. Football is a passionate game and as long as the views stay within the parameters of what is acceptable, we encourage people to write, get involved and share their thoughts on the mighty Tottenham Hotspur.


  1. bazza
    14/05/2013 @ 10:35 pm

    great article, nearly bought tears to another 70 year old spurs fan. I,m in Aussie now but remember my WHL visits with fondest memories. I also recall the Crewe game, unfortunately being in the forces at the time I was unable to get home and go. But I do recall an even better match, 10-4 win against Everton, Bill Nicks first game in charge, oh happy days. But I will be back in UK in Sept and will most certainly head for WHL once again. Again, a great article, and I wish u and Granddad all the best and many more happy days together at the Lane. COYS

  2. lee
    15/05/2013 @ 1:06 am

    great article love it

  3. Don Bradley
    15/05/2013 @ 10:50 am

    Great article Ian. I am that 70 year old Grandad and, yes, I did have a wonderful night. Spending time with my Grandson at football is always special to me.
    Spurs have always been in my heart and, growing up in N. London, went to every home game (and later, as a youth, many away games). I to remember the 10-4 thrashing of Everton and many more – the 4 – 0 (I think) thrashing of Sunderland, in a Cup replay, where the sound of’ ‘Bladen Races’ got quieter and quieter as the goals went in until the Sunderland Sound died altogether. A back heel by Bobby Smith to Danny Blanchflower and a rare goal by the captain and master. Wonderful times, wonderful memories and wonderful team.
    One thing I would like everyone to know. Ian was terribly ill as a young child in the Royal Marsden Hospital. Several of the babies and children in there didn’t make it. Thankfully, Ian recovered and, when he was sufficiently well, at about 5/6 years of age, (he’s now a strapping 6ft + young man with a lovely family) the Club invited him to the ground (in one of their boxes) for the game against Ipswich. It was his first match and he has been an avid, ardent supporter since! There were many other instances where the Club invited us along and were so caring and helpful. Wonderful Club.

    Finally, and trivial I know in todays times, but we had great fun at the games in the old days but without the swearing, lewdness and abuse that blights today’s society. Remember lads there may be very young kids at the game – our future supporters – and their parents do not want them subjected to some of the language that is used. Moderate your chants to the situation – Be aware of those around you!!


  4. chris boyd waters
    15/05/2013 @ 5:02 pm

    Message to a dear departed influence.
    Dear Dad, I grew up (even though I was born a Londoner and became a die hard Spurs fan) listening to your stories of Newcastle United. In the ’20s there was Seymour, Boyd, Hudspeth, McDonald, McCracken, the great Hughie Gallagher (who committed suicide by throwing himself under a train, broke and alcoholic), and later on in the 1950s, W’or Jackie (Milburn), Joe Harvey, the Robledo brothers, McMichael, Scoular, White, Simpson and Mitchell and so on. You saw live all of Newcastle’s three FA Cup triumphs in the 1950s, and when I was 22, in 1974, we went with other relatives to see Newcastle unfortunately get trounced by Liverpool 3-0. Trains and roads were so busy that we walked the 6 miles home, back to South Harrow where we lived. You took me to my first Spurs match in April 1964, where again it was Liverpool who did it for us (3-1) on the way to their 1st League title of the modern era. But I was buzzing and hooked I saw the great John White that day, who died soon after, struck by lightning on the golf course. Then, we went regularly together until I started going by myself in late 1966. But you often came with me through the late 60s (we saw them win the Cup in 1967 first final, your tenth) and throughout the 70s and early to mid ’80s, sitting often behind the goal at the Paxton Rd end, and even when we played Newcastle you kept quite neutral. Dad, it’s a lot to ask, but your latest manager is a bit of a weasel and has hinted Newcastle won’t play hard to win this weekend. You’re going to have to intervene, and ensure that they do. Because if you can take points off Arsenal, and we do our job at the Lane, we’ll be in the CL next season. It’s 3rd time in a row we’ve been close to that competition, dad, and just missed out there was that fiasco with food poisoning 6/7 years ago. So come on dad ..instill in your great club some pride to go out and win, even with nothing to play for. The Magpies may even come 12th if they do. One thing I don’t want is to start resenting a club I’ve loved and followed (my second club) because they couldn’t give a toss about the final day of the season, thereby allowing Arsenal to walk all over them. And Newcastle United! it for you and your fans. Spurs expect nothing from you except total commitment to WIN a football match.

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  6. jodi_ramone
    09/11/2013 @ 7:01 pm

    great article mate

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