Horsforth Fairweather FC

HFFC 1980-81: A Mountain to Climb.

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  HFFC 1980-81. 
Back - John Field, Rob Phillis, Mal Clements, Paul Kenyon, Mark Bickerdike, Martin Riley, Ray Child. 
Front - Bernie Gilmore, Chris Shenton, Steve Burns, Pete Gable, Chris Fitzgerald, Andy Lewis.
This first HFFC team pic was taken at Butcher Hill on 28th September 1980 by Billy Potter.

Back: John Field, Rob Phillis, Mal Clements, Paul Kenyon, Mark Bickerdike, Martin Riley, Ray Child. Front: Bernie Gilmore, Chris Shenton, Steve Burns, Pete Gable, Chris Fitzgerald, Andy Lewis.

  In the days before colour photography had been invented, Horsforth Fairweather's first season in competitive football was the stuff of which legends are made - for all the wrong reasons! Placed in a division which was at that time some way short of the lowest, the immature and inexperienced Horsforth side were beaten more or less every week, usually by an embarrassingly large score. We bought some new red and white striped shirts (nobody really remembers now why we chose those colours), and rented a pitch at Butcher Hill in West Park, we organised changing rooms at the Dalesman, and generally put our collective heart and soul into it, to no avail. We were quite simply out of our depth.

  From a narrow reverse in the first game, 3-2 against Wilsons Sports at East End Park, the margins of defeat quickly spiralled upwards, and before long double figures were being conceded quite regularly. Facing opponents of the calibre of Station Hotel from Crossgates, travelling across Leeds on Sunday mornings to such undiscovered venues as Middleton Clearings, Snake Lane, Temple Newsam, etc for the first time, and coming home humiliated every week, the experience can only be described as "character-forming". We did salvage two unforgettable wins, away and at home to Union Tarpaulins in successive weeks just before Christmas, but the Sunday League must have been greatly surprised to receive our application for the next season. The team, though greatly variable, most often consisted of Paul Kenyon ("Kenny") in goals; a defence comprising some permutation of Steve Burns, Ray Child, Mark Bickerdike, Steve Watson, Rob Phillis, and Andy Lewis; a midfield chosen from Pete Gable, Ian McGregor, John Field, Colin Bennett, Dave Murphy (stolen from Negas), Howard Churchill, Tim Hirst and Thackley Thumpers mainman Mal Clements; and strikers including Martin Riley, former Post Office player Chris Fitzgerald, and Tony Cole. The club captaincy passed from Pete to Ian to Ray during the course of the campaign.

  To pick a high spot out from this grim season is actually an easy task, given the lack of alternatives. The club's first-ever competitive win, 3-1 against Union Tarpaulins in the mud and rain at Bedquilts in December (scorers John Field and Chris Fitz 2) was a game that no one who took part in it will ever forget.

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League Table.

Leeds Sunday League Division 5A, 1980-81.
  P W D L Pts
Station Hotel 22 19 3 0 41
ESD Sports 22 15 4 3 34
Cobourg Celtic 22 14 2 6 30
Eldon 22 13 2 7 28
Fishermans Hut 22 11 2 9 24
Wilsons Sports B 22 10 2 10 22
Sphinx Athletic 21 9 3 9 21
Kippax Band 22 9 2 11 20
Gatecroft 22 6 6 10 18
Roundhay Albion 22 7 3 12 17
Horsforth Fairweather 22 2 0 20 4
Union Tarpaulin 21 1 1 19 3

NB - Union Tarpaulin and Sphinx was never played, and points not awarded.

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Results 1980-81.

September 7th

Wilsons Sports (A)

League

2-3

McGregor (pen), Riley.

September 14th

Eldon (H)

League

2-9

McGregor, Riley.

September 21st

Kippax Band (A)

League

1-10

Riley.

September 28th

Golden Lion (H)

Jack Shaw Trophy Round 1

2-7

Child, Fitzgerald.

October 5th

Cobourg Celtic (H)

League

2-13

Clements 2 (1 pen).

October 12th

Station Hotel (H)

League

1-10

Riley.

October 19th

Becketts (A)

Sunday Jubilee Cup Round 2

2-3

Churchill, Watson.

October 26th

Fishermans Hut (A)

League

0-3

 

November 2nd

Sphinx Athletic (A)

League

0-10

 

November 9th

Eldon (A)

League

0-6

 

November 16th

Station Hotel (A)

League

1-7

McGregor (pen).

December 7th

Sphinx Athletic (H)

League

0-5

 

December 14th

Union Tarpaulin (A)

League

3-1

Field, Fitzgerald 2.

December 21st

Union Tarpaulin (H)

League

4-2

Fitzgerald 2, Murphy, McGregor.

December 28th

ESD Sports (A)

League

1-6

Fitzgerald.

January 4th

Roundhay Albion (A)

League

1-5

Murphy.

January 18th

ESD Sports (H)

League

0-11

 

January 25th

Gatecroft (A)

League

0-6

 

February 1st

Kippax Band (H)

League

1-5

Riley.

February 8th

Wilsons Sports (H)

League

3-6

McGregor, Cole 2.

February 15th

Roundhay Albion (H)

League

2-7

Clements, McGregor (pen).

March 8th

Gatecroft (H)

League

2-6

Cole, Bennett.

April 5th

Cobourg Celtic (H)

League

2-6

Clements, Fitzgerald.

April 12th

Fishermans Hut (H)

League

1-10

Phillis.

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Appearances 1980-81.

Name

Games

Sub

Goals

Bennett, Colin

8

1

1

Bickerdike, Mark

22

 

 

Burns, Steve

19

4

 

Child, Ray

22

1

1

Churchill, Howard

11

 

1

Clayden, Ian

 

1

 

Clements, Mal

9

4

4

Cole, Tony

10

3

3

Field, John

17

1

1

Fitzgerald, Chris

18

1

7

Gable, Pete

7

 

 

Gilmore, Bernie

5

7

 

Hirst, Tim

10

2

 

Kenyon, Paul

19

 

 

Lewis, Andy

11

3

 

McGregor, Ian

19

1

6

Murphy, Dave

6

 

2

Phillis, Rob

15

1

1

Procter, Steve

 

1

 

Riley, Martin

16

2

5

Rothwell-Wood, Keith

2

1

 

Shenton, Chris

5

3

 

Vernon, Dave

2

 

 

Watson, Steve

11

1

1

Own Goals

   

 

Also signed - Martin Lee.

Games as captain - Gable 7, Lewis 2, McGregor 13, Child 2.

Games as goalkeeper - Kenyon 19, Gilmore 4, Rothwell-Wood 1.

Cautions - Churchill 1.

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Awards.

Player of the Year - Mark Bickerdike.

Goal of the Season - Chris Fitzgerald (v. Golden Lion in the Jack Shaw).

Top Goal Scorer - Chris Fitzgerald (7).



Club Colours.

First choice - Red and white striped shirts, white shorts, red socks.

Change - Light green and blue shirts (the "Court Jesters"), white shorts, blue socks
(worn in the away matches with Wilsons Sports, Fishermans Hut, Union Tarpaulin, ESD Sports, Roundhay Albion).




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