OLD TENISONIANS

Est 1878


The Association of former pupils of Archbishop Tenisons School

 




Edition 14. Summer 2001


Editorial: Bob’s bollix


Letter(s) From Reader(s):


Football:


Cricket:


And Finally:




Hello Peeps,
‘Now is the winter of our discontent….’. Too bloody right, Will
Those of you who remember the final paragraph of Sean Jones 5th XI football review in the last issue might recall how Sean intended to report on the end of the floods, his team would finally leave the ark and continue their journey around the world, courtesy of Connex South East.
I, foolishly, thought Sean was being humorous but fiction became fact and as we all know it has hardly stopped raining since England beat the West Indies at the Oval at the end of last August. This has had a distressing affect on my general well-being and I have consequently enjoyed quite the most depressing winter since Kennedy and Khrushchev were considering bombing the granny out of us all in the early sixties.
Of course there have been some highly enjoyable moments this winter. Joan and I have thoroughly enjoyed the Royal Shakespeare Company’s productions of all of the Bard’s history plays. The weather occasionally subsided enough to enjoy a few Saturday afternoons at Motspur Park. This brings me, rather neatly, to a letter I found in my newspaper recently which combines both of these interests. Firstly the play: Perhaps the most famous love story ever written, set ‘in fair Verona’, Romeo and Juliet. The football: The flags and banners of Italian football were not necessarily part of the scene I grew up with down at the Den but even a cursory glance at any of today’s televised matches show that our game has imported some of continental Europe’s colour.
The letter I speak of concerned the ultimate in insults. A banner bought by a visiting group of supporters from Napoli, was unfurled as the home team, Verona, ran onto the pitch, it read ‘Giulietta e una zoccola’; {‘JULIET’S A SLAG’}. Such a literary approach is unlikely to work at such venues as Oldham, Derby or Huddersfield and Joan found the message offensive to women in general and Juliet in particular but it made me laugh out loud on a dark, dull, wet day when I already had the ‘ump and the paper had been full of foot and mouth etc.
Before I move on to your letters etc I hope you will not mind my giving you yet another example of my physical deterioration. Last summer, for the first time in my life, I had an instance of sensitive teeth and gums. Apparently this is something that many people can expect once they hit a certain age and it can be quite painful. So I went to the chemists and purchased a suitable product called Ambesol. After a day or so the discomfort passed and I had no further need of my Ambesol until about March this year, when this gum thing started hurting again. After a couple of sleepless nights I called the dentist. ‘Is it that painful sir, well I should be able to fit you in, in about a week.’ Thanks. Again the pain had gone by the time I got to see the dentist and he could not find anything wrong with me. He asked me whether I had been putting anything on my gums. So I told him, ‘yes, Anusol.’ As soon as the word was out of my mouth I knew I was in trouble. Anusol is a bit like that Ronseal advert, in that you put it exactly where it says on the tube and is for an entirely different complaint. The dentist, who I have visited for some years and whom I had previously suspected of having had a sense of humour by-pass, said to me; ‘Mr.Blewer, if you’ve been putting Anusol on your gums, I’m just a little concerned as to what you’ve been doing with your tooth brush all these years.’ Oh,how I laughed.


Keith Holder has moved to:-
2, Holder Close
Lordswood
Chatham
Kent
ME5 8LW
Keith tells me that he always looks forward to receiving the Mumblings and can now rest assured that he will not miss out on any Club buzz.
Dear Bob,
Stung by the criticism contained in your Editorial of the Nov/Dec edition of the Mumblings, I thought it was high time I put fingers to keyboard to say that I, at least, do appreciate receiving news of the ‘old boys’. Notwithstanding I remember hardly any of the names, yours excluded ( although I may be confusing you with a Mark Blewer {my little brother B.B.} ), and never took part in any games unless press-ganged.
I felt particularly encouraged to write as I came across my old report book whilst having a massive claret ( for ‘claret’ read ‘clearout’ the spell check came up with claret and I have been known to drink plenty of it so it seemed appropriate! ). I wonder how we would get on with the league tables of today!
To quote a few comments:
Dr.Polgar on my coming 12th out of 30 in Latin with a score of 21% in the summer exams of 1965 “slow but quite diligent”. (Inter alia and ultra vires still hold me in good stead at meetings!)
Mr.Laidlaw-Brown: “Amiable but idle”
Mr.Smith:”If he was not so lazy, he would do quite well.”
Academically, I did not do so well ( I only passed two ‘O’levels ) but if nothing else the old school was character building. It had to be, most of the teachers were characters!- Joe, Ben, Basher, Pappy, Jed, Cod etc. Plenty of discipline, who can forget the canings, dusting tests, flying board dusters – if we were at school now we would all be in line for large stress payouts!
I left school in 1969 to train as a chef at Westminster Hotel School. I did better there coming 7th out of 70 in the first year exams and passing my City and Guilds diploma with Credit. I then decided that working as a chef was too much like hard work and I joined the Civil Service at the old Department of Education and Science.
I enjoyed the work, but true to my school reports, still mixed work with play. Even when I was appointed Private Secretary to the Hon Peter Brooke MP and then Parliamentary Clerk to successive Education Secretaries of State: Baker, MacGregor, Clarke and Patten. Senior staff and Ministers would often pop into my office for a laugh and a joke and of afternoon tea. The work was long and hard and many weeks I clocked up 90 hours, enjoying every minute of it. All of which helped me to lose the ‘slow’ and ‘lazy’ tag and gained me the MBE for my services to the Department.
Sadly, in 1993, three months after my 40th birthday, I suffered a stroke and had to take a medical retirement after 23 years in the Department. But after two years off, I now work part time doing freelance work as a Parliamentary Consultant. I am an Associate Lecturer for the Government Group at the Civil Service College and I have just written a book on legislation, which I hope to have published this year.
I spend quite a lot of time travelling abroad – I clocked up my 30th cruise this year and have developed a real interest in ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome (Ben’s influence, no doubt! ) I love good food, fine wines and high living when I can afford it.
So there we are, an ‘old boy’ made reasonably good because of a good grounding at ATGS and the support and encouragement of my wonderful family.
Best wishes to you and all other members.
George Oliver
9 St Hilda’s Close
Pound Hill
Crawley
West Sussex RH10 3HN.

This next letter was sent to Alan Baker.
Dear Alan
What a lovely surprise to receive your letter and copies of the Mumblings. With the traumatic time we have had , I had quite forgotten that I had not received them for sometime. But I would have remembered, for as one of the correspondents said in the magazine, you may not often think of the OTA but when you do, the memories come flooding back.
We decided to move last March feeling that we needed a change after 16 years at the bungalow. We are now doting grandparents by the way, our daughter, Katherine had a little boy, Michael James, getting on for 2 years ago now.
Sheila and I are fine and Pat is in great health in her 84th year. She still loves walking and is a great opera fan, she went to Madrid a couple of years ago to see Carmen.
I was sad to read the news about Will Humphries and Harry Thorogood, both of whom I knew well. I played in Harry’s 2ndXI and remember his cheerfulness and fine leadership. I remember his absolute delight when we won the AFA Surrey junior cup.
Your letter prompted many memories and of course I remember the Oval match, bowling you of your pads, first ball and then Dennis Bartlett playing and missing the next five and then being taken off.
I will never forget Saturday and Sunday, playing at the Ground with the likes of yourself, Joe Judge, Tom Farrow, Dennis Bartlett, Tony Rumbelow, Stu Courtney, Dennis Newman, Peter Leeds, Bobby Clifton, Derek Hazell, Geoff Uglow, Jack Hewitt, John Murdoch and many others. Many of the above would also be involved in the impromptu concerts that often followed our home matches. There would be Pan’s People (but a lot uglier), Stu Courtney, Pete Leeds, Dennis Newman and myself, doing our own version of line dancing to the accompaniment of the Shadows. Dennis Bartlett and his miming to Ella Fitzgerald’s ‘Hot Tomato’, dressed in various bits of underware of the ladies present. John Murdoch up on a table belting out his rendition of ‘Diana’ Forget – never!
Many years ago, I had the honour (I think that was the correct word) to be Social Secretary, so I really felt for John Addlington and the problems that he now encounters. Sheila and I both hope to be able to join you at a future date, that’s a promise.
Please pass on kindest regards to everybody from Sheila and myself.
Bob Huntley
26 Shotwood Close
Rolleston on Dove
Burton on Trent
Staffordshire DE13 9BN

E-Mail:
Robert Huntley@compuserve.com
I also received a e-mail from Bill Gonella ( w.gonella@btinternet.com )
Eagle eyed Bill reports from an article in the Telegrah, that former Tenison’s science and IT teacher David Branfield, had been awarded a three month contract to present BBC’s Tomorrow’s World. Good luck to him.
Bill remarked that concerning the death of Ron Gulliver, he remebered waiting for the 40 tram, outside Ron’s shop to take him to school. I would venture that most public transport in Bill’s schooldays was still horse drawn.
After touching on a couple of other matters Bill hoped that soon there might be a directory of Old Boy e-mail numbers. Well Bill, in a previous issue I did volunteer to pass on all such numbers to Alan Baker for when he publishes the next address book but less than a handful bothered to reply but who knows, maybe, one day. Anyway yours is now out there. Thanks Bill.
Another e-Mail arrived from the Cliftons, who seemed to have spent much of 2000 celebrating the 60th birthdays of several of Bob’s old school friends in various parts of the globe, Bob Price in New Zealand, who had not been seen for 44 years and Den in Canada ( is that Denis Newman whom I blame for some of my first drunken evenings at Motspur Park when still a mere schoolboy?BB) also taking in family in Australia on to New Zealand, Bangkok, Honululu, pretty much everywehere.
Jan has promised me an article for the Mumblings at some stage.
That’s enough of the old lags for a moment, here’s what the young lags are up to.


NEWS FROM THE SCHOOL
Last autumn, Kate Hoey MP, Minister for Sport, attended the School to present the Physical Education Department with two awards, the Sportsmark Award for general excellence in the teaching and learning of PE and the FA Charter Award for the high standard of football coaching that the school offers. Steve Lanckham, Zac Phillips and Ronnie Thomas each received a certificate to rapturous applause from the School. (Steve apparently managed to pick up his award without tweaking a hamstring.) Unfortunately both for the School and ourselves, Steve has decided to further his career elswhere, accepting an offer that he couldn’t refuse.
Ms Hoey also presented Ms Anne-Marie Emmett with the Investors in Careers Award in recognition of her work in Careers Education.
The School are looking for £206,000 to help with the move of the Art Department (another area in which the School excels) up to the roof and would welcome any donation no matter how small.
The School has also been recommended for the Investors in People charter mark, a testimony to the efforts of all the staff both teaching and non-teaching. This award has been given in the past to some of the country’s most prestigious companies and therefore reflects tremendous credit on the School.
Last autumn,the School’s debating team surprised everybody including themselves, by winning the inaugural Lambeth Schools Debating Competition. The three boys earned themselves £40 each and the School picked up £200 and a silver trophy.
Its comforting to know that the old place is still turning out kids who can talk bollocks, isn’t it?
B.B.
DEATH CAN BE FATAL
Apparently another symptom of ageing, is an increasing fascination with reading the obituary columns in the newspapers, on the spurious grounds that if you don’t see your own name, you know you are still alive. A couple of you have sent copies of recent obituaries which may be of some interest.
The first of these was sent by a friend, a former ‘A’ former from schooldays, who spotted the following from an obituary in The Guardian. Written by Sophie Parkin about Sylvia Scaffardi, a women who had lived a remarkable life but who was simply described as a ‘campaigner and teacher’. Some ladies may choose to avert their eyes from the next few lines.
…..Ms.Scaffardi only took to teaching at the age of 52 and it was at this time that she met my mother, Molly, then a 21year old art teacher, who heard Sylvia shouting… “Has anybody had the misfortune to teach those little c***s in 4C?”……
My friend, the A former, thought this was hilarious but his note to me mentioned that their was never anything too “little” about his C form mates.
In a more serious vain, the following is a precis of an obituary which appeared in the Times, last December and was sent to me by both Mike Johnson, via John Adlington and John Shapter via Alan Baker.
On the 4th December last year, a Martin Apley died aged 89. He had been born Meyer Apfelbaum, in London the son of Jewish refugees. He was educated at Archbishop Tenison’s Grammar School, from where he went to University College London, taking a first in chemistry and chemical engineering.
Mr Apley’s career was a very distinguished one. He was chief chemist of a company named Catalin, when in 1943, Barnes Wallis couldn’t get the right sort of bounce for his bomb, he turned to Mr. Apley for help, and the rest, as they say, is history. This was not Mr.Apley’s only wartime success. During the course of the hostilities, Britain had to send Mosquito airplanes out to the Far East. These planes were made of wood and stuck together with glue and simply fell apart in the tropical conditions. Mr.Apley it was who modified the adhesives that allowed the planes to fly.
Also during the war he pioneered the use of resin coated materials to protect canisters and packages that needed to be airlifted to various destinations. He also developed a type of pit prop, which did not slip under pressure as previous designs did, thus saving the lives of untold miners.
It’s quite amazing to find that amongst the ranks of former pupils, there should be such a man. It’s a shame we should only learn about him after his death.
C.L.Stokell M.M. C.D.P.E.
An appreciation from Alex Robb
Les Stokell died from throat cancer, a particularly grim end for someone who neither smoked nor drank, and was a fitness fanatic. His death came as a shock to all of us who knew him; to us he appeared indestructible. Anyone who had seen Les striding across Dartmoor, through pouring rain, in a howling gale, wearing a battered pair of shorts and an open necked shirt, rounding up lost souls during a Ten Tors exercise would have thought him impervious to all ills.
Les Stokell joined the staff at Tenison’s when Harry Waddingham left to take up a new appointment.
After very eventful war service with the Royal Marines, Les spent time in Canada where he trained for the Commonwealth Games marathon, returned to the U.K. for Physical Education qualifications, and worked for the PE Department of H.M.Prison Service…..a move to Tenison’s seemed almost inevitable after that.
As a Royal Marine Commando, Les saw action throughout the war in many war zones. There are countless tales of his service life that could be told. For instance, he climbed out of a military hospital in order to join his unit in time for the D Day landings and took with him as extra kit, a cricket bat and ball and a football. Among other things he was a sports enthusiast. His promotions and inevitable demotions were legion. He was then and remained, unpredictable….something of a law unto himself. Thus it is until this day that no one knows how he came to win the Military Medal. According to his rare references to it, the medal was just one of several ‘given out’ to him and an unspecified number of his colleagues for some unrevealed action one dark night somewhere in Europe.
His work at Tenison’s was built on the strong foundations of physical training that Harry Waddingham had set in place. However in his time the range of sporting activities offered to pupils widened considerably to include rugby (abetted by Tom Neville) and hockey (abetted by me), sailing, canoeing and orienteering; athletics blossomed, tennis, badminton, basketball, gymnastics and rock climbing all became regular features of the PE programme. Football and cricket continued the while, under the eyes of other members of Staff. His enthusiasm for physical fitness rubbed off on many boys ( and even a few members of Staff ). There must be a legion of O.T’s who remember Les actively coaching and participating in any physical activity involving sweat, blood, strain and tears… and his organising of school activity trips both at home and abroad were a mixture of brilliance, luck and good humour that only he could generate. I remember him on one skiing trip to Austria, travelling all the way without his passport (“Must have left it on the table.”) and being strategically absent when the customs people came round. His passport duly arrived by post, so the journey home was almost peaceful.
Under his guidance teams from school entered the Ten Tors Competition for several years, and achieved marked success.
Later in his school career, Les became the O.C. of the School Cadet Force Unit which replaced the A.T.C. that had flourished for many years.
In truth, the contribution which Les made to Tenisonian life is almost impossible to quantify; all I can say is that when he was around there was seldom a dull moment!
Retirement brought but a small reduction in Les’ physical activity; a hip replacement operation caused him to give up serious running and take up mountain biking instead, hardly less strenuous but somehow less taxing on his hip joints.
It was fitting that the school was represented at his funeral in Devon by the Rev’d Peter Stone and John Shapter who now both live in the South West. His Royal Marine associations were remembered by the presence of a Royal Marine bugler in full ceremonial dress who sounded the Last Post and Reveille during the service.
Alex Robb
John Shapter, in writing to Alan Baker, mentioned that he’d had a nice chat with one of Les’ son in laws who once again recalled Les’ annoyance at not being able to continue some of the more robust of his sporting interests.
In a note to me Alex Robb said he’d had some difficulty in writing about Les who was “too complex a character for simple accounts…”
Strangely Alex and I had been talking about Les when last we met at one of Johnny Addlington’s ladies luncheon club evenings, before Les’ death. He told a story about his commando days which, although he omitted from his own appreciation, I’m sure he won’t mind my repeating it here.
During a staff room conversation about possible venues for a school trip, somebody suggested Norway as a possibility. Another staff member said…’You’ve been there haven’t you Les?’. Without looking up, Les said quietly, ‘Only at night’. With which the subject was closed.
When I heard of Les’ death, I was just about to post a letter and the last Mumblings to Andy Bettell. Andy was both pupil and then PE colleague of Les, so I scribbled a quick PS with the news, describing my shock that somebody who I had always thought of as part rock and teak should succumb to so mortal a death.
If you happened to be in the inner circle, which probably meant you had to be a gymnast or sportsmen but all had to be real triers, you might have seen a little more of Les’ character than you might of many other school masters. His sense of humour reminded me of my Dad’s (maybe it’s a war thing) in that it was life’s little reversals that seemed to amuse them most. Les always seemed to think that if you fell off a rock face and bashed your head, it was a great laugh and all that was needed was a steaming hot mug of Tiger’s sweat tea, as he called it, and you’d be fully restored and of course he was normally right.
As Alex mentioned earlier, football and cricket were ‘coached’ by other members of staff and for four years I didn’t think that Les had any interest in these silly sports (not enough danger?). In the fourth year, with about 23 other bowlers unavailable due to exams, I was selected for the 1st XI cricket team a few games prior to the Bec match at the Oval. Les shocked me by offering to try to help with my untutored action (there hadn’t been much help from any other direction). I was perhaps even more surprised to discover he knew what he was talking about. Whilst my action remained pretty much the same, he certainly helped with the way I approached and thought about bowling.
After leaving school, Mickey Brown remembers seeing Les down at Motspur Park one Saturday afternoon in the early seventies. Any of you that remember the hairstyles of the early seventies might remember Mick with shoulder length hair, certainly a moustache and sometimes a beard. Les spotted Mick walking off the pitch and said to him…’Blimey Brown, I thought you were bloody Jesus Christ playing out there’. Mick said that he ‘always played like that’.
One last memory was of a commercial nature. I don’t know whether he was particularly knowledgeable but I believe he used to do a little ‘antique’ trading in various markets. One of his best lines were ‘genuine’ Russian icons, which he used to knock up in his workshop or garage
A great shame that Les never had anything to do with the OTA but in truth we probably could never have done anything daft-arsed enough to interest him.


SOCIAL SCENE.
The 108th Annual Dinner and Dance
After several years at the Hilton, Purley Way, a new venue was sought and we settled on Coulsdon Manor. Some sixty members and guests attended on the evening of the 31st March and from the feedback I have received, everybody seemed to enjoy themselves.
Our guests were the Headmaster of the School, Brian Jones and his wife, Mary, together with head of P.E; Steve Lankham.
Having had the best meal we have been served for a long time, David Evans proposed the toast to the President in his usual inimitable style and I hope I responded in kind. I touched on the achievements of the School which is now making good progress in improving its academic record and congratulated Brian Jones and his staff on this. From an Old Boy perspective, I congratulated the Football Club for putting its house in order and would have congratulated the 1stXI cricket team on its promotion to the top division of the league but unfortunately, there was barely a cricketer in the room.
Finally Linda, myself and the not so small ‘Codlets’, all now in there twenties apart from the lad who is getting on for fourteen, all thoroughly enjoyed our evening. As both President and Hon.Social Secretary, I could hardly be expected to present the wife with the traditional bouquet, so with a tweak of the ear and a strategic wink, Taff kindly deputised for me and presented Linda with flowers in the Club colours.
John Adlington.
At a recent Committee meeting which I couldn’t attend (I was on a research mission, drinking fine beer in Prague.), I believe that the events described above by Johnny, may be the last of that nature, at least for the forseeable future. This magazine has reported the declining interest and numbers for some years, resulting in substantial losses of our meagre resources. Whilst some members will doubtless regret the passing of what was perhaps the oldest social function of the Club, it is time, perhaps, to move on. With about only 25 former pupils attending this dinner and dance out of a membership of some 200, perhaps the second social report will show us a way forward.
I hope I speak on behalf of everybody in thanking John for his efforts over the years in the onerous task of organising the dinner and dance.
B.B.


School Dinners
Last autumn I had an idea – why not start a lunch club for Old Boys?
Like most of us, I have fond memories of my days at Tenisons. The bonds created at school have stayed with many of us as we have grown older and gone our own way in the world. The common thread is our time at school and the friendships built there – many having stood the test of time.
So, what to do? I circulated about 150 former pupils who appear on the current Association membership list and had well over 40 replies. A central London venue seemed likely to offer more people, reasonable access and so with the help of John Cash, we chose St.Georges Hotel, Langham Place, in the heart of the West End.
The dining room of the hotel has one long glass wall on it’s outside giving a splendid rooftop view across London. I met the chef, discussed our requirements and devised a menu. The date was to be the 27th April.
At this point, I re-circulated those who had replied to my first missive to firm up the numbers and to ask for cash. The response was amazing! As well as my contemporaries and those I know through the sports club, I had some wonderful letters from old boys who couldn’t make the date but wished us well. It was great to hear from Jack Hewitt after so long and from Kelvin Tyrell, John Hamley, Bob Daws, Colin Sales, Alan Baker, Dennis Bryant, Stuart Courtney, Peter Light, Ian Smithson from Australia, David Hobbs and Dave Clack – perhaps next time chaps!
Alan Lythgoe and the class of 1941 decided to come en masse – David Jenks, John Webb, Colin Steere and Ted Maddock, unfortunately, Ted broke his collar bone the day before the lunch and reluctantly had to withdraw. Most of the rest of us injured ourselves in other ways during the course of the afternoon/evening due to so many of us being in a state of extreme relaxation. In fact we were relaxed as newts.
Come the day and 41 people sat down to lunch. It was great! I met some guys I hadn’t seen for years – Tom Rix, Alan English (looking very well), Bob Brown (looking even better)[ steady, Eddie! Ed.] and Dave Clark (The shorter), who I had not seen for about 30 years ( he’s now something big in the city !).
The rapport was instant, the food, very good, the drink, very expensive. I made a speech and John Adlington did not hold a raffle ( we only had all afternoon!).
Everybody seemed to think it was a wonderful idea and we will definitely repeat it.
After the lunch, a crowd of us repaired to a local hostelry where the aforementioned Dave Clark got completely out of his box and frequently cannoned around off the furniture, as one does.
Did we achieve our objectives?- we certainly did and I would urge all old boys to get to the next one.
I have co-opted Bob Blewer to help me with the next one, so watch this space!
Cheers (hic!).
Eddie Boyle.
I am sure many of you will have been aware of Alan Lithgoe, assiduously photographing all of those attending together with the two set pieces, the presentation of the Life Vice Presidency to Peter Leberl by President John Addlington and Ed’s speech.
Within a couple of days, I received the fruits of Alan’s efforts, some excellent photos. Unfortunately, and here I would particularly like to apologise to Alan and to the rest of you that were there, I do not possess the right sort of systems to reproduce these shots onto the floppy disc, from which the magazine is printed.
If anybody would like to borrow the disc Alan sent me, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
On a more personal note, at one stage in the proceedings, I suddenly found myself in the company of Alan English, Jack Hobbs and Pete Leberl. I was rather hoping that Alan might have got a shot of us four because we were undoubtedly the slowest opening batsmen and bowlers that have ever represented this Club.
This was in truth a great event and Ed deserves all the thanks and praise that has come his way. As Ed said, watch this space.
B.B


News from the Sports Ground
After the record rainfall of the winter and spring, the ground has finally dried out; much to the relief of groundsman Alan Landymore!
Further improvement of the football pitches has been declared as the Sports Ground Company’s priority for resources this year. It has already invested in new machinery to enable the football pitches to be spiked and top dressed with soil regularly. This should further improve the important top few inches of the playing surfaces and assist in combating heavy rainfall. The Company also plans to apply twice the usual amount of grass seed and top soil to pitches. This process was delayed by the wet spring; but we are slowly catching up.
After a few hiccups with the annual renovation of the cricket square – again, due to the bad weather – Alan Landymore has got the square into good shape. The continuous applications of loam with a high clay content over the past five years is beginning to see firmer pitches with more pace.
Off the field, the renewal of the flooring throughout the ‘Home’ dressing rooms and toilet area and the staff/ladies area has been a much needed improvement
I should like to record the sincere thanks of the OTA and the Sports Ground Company to Dave Clark, who retires in July as one of the OTA representatives on the Sports Ground’s Management Committee. David has made an invaluable contribution to the affairs of the sports ground, since the Company took over direct management of the ground in 1996. As the Headmaster of a large secondary school, himself, he has been able to bring a special and relevant expertise to the Committee’s deliberations. Alas, it is those very heavy duties as Head of Archbishop Lancfranc School that have now decided David that he must stand down.
Finally a word about John Shapter, former Sports Ground Company Secretary and Deputy Head at Tenison’s School and an OTA member for twenty- five years. John, retired to Cornwall last year but has recently suffered a heart attack, which I am glad to say did not prove to be too serious; and he’s making a splendid recovery. John is, however under orders to slim down his rather substantial frame: no more pies and much more exercise ( this advice might also be followed by several of the current 3rd XI football team. Ed )! Good luck, John. We all send our best wishes.
Alan Baker
Ground Manager


FOOTBALL.
Chairman’s Chat
This season has been a mixed one for the Football Club. Our main objective was to steady the ship, in terms of our finances. To a certain extent, our efforts were undermined by the persistent rainfall between October and April, or in other words, almost the whole season. However our players do now realise the importance of pulling their weight financially, not just on the playing side. (I’ll just leave a space here for the Editor to make a suitably sarcastic comment about me trying to pull my weight around the football pitch)……….
( I am sure you will have noticed that I got my retaliation in, in the previous article, Taff, but thanks awfully for the offer. Ed )
On the playing side, the weather has, I believe, been a strong factor in some of our teams not being as successful as they might have been. It was impossible to build any continuity, which is so important in our standard of football.
Success, in the main, has come from our lower XI’s. Both the 4th and the 6th XI reached their respective finals in the OBI Cup, the 6th missing out 2-4 to Old Bromleians but the 4th XI comfortably beat the host’s O.Owens by 3-0. The 4ths also won the LOB Cup and as I write need three out of four points in their final double header of the season, to be Champions of Division 1 South. So well done to both Steve Rodley and Dave Brewis for keeping things going, particularly during a run of eight successive games being cancelled due to rain.
Hopefully there will be contributions from all team captains ( thanks for all their efforts ) in this edition of the Mumblings, so you will be able to experience the highs and lows of everybody’s season.
I would like to highlight one very important and encouraging development this season, and that is the increasing number of youngsters ( real youngsters, not just players who are in their thirties, who we regard as youngsters! ) who have joined the Club. Thanks to Steve Lankham, Head of PE at the School, who has introduced four lads to the Club, the first for many years. As has been mentioned earlier Steve is going to work elsewhere and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Steve, on behalf of the Old Boys, for helping with the bridge building between the School and ourselves. Dickie Turner, for supplying the ageing 3rd XI with a much needed injection of youth and Ronnie Byrne and his glamarous assistant “Pickers” for continuing to nurture the 6th XI boys, most of whom have helped the 1stXI out at some stage or another.
I must thank Barry Ashford once again for his efforts this season, without him there would be no season. Thanks also to Life Vice President Peter Langford and John Barnes for doing the jobs in the Club that still so few people take a turn at i.e. washing up, sweeping up and locking up. As ever, Maria and Hayley have maintained the high standard of post match refreshments we have become used to.
Hopefully we can continue to attract players to the Club as we have done this season and that this will be reflected both in financial stability coupled with winning a few more trophies.
Chairman “Taff”.
Stop press: Congratulations to the 4th XI, Division 1 South Champions.

1st XI

The expected happened, and for the first time in close on twenty years, the 1stXI have been relegated. It was realised with two games of the season left. So although relegation was on the cards, as early as January, the team staved off, some would say, the inevitable until the middle of May.

There were a number of reasons for our demise, with many circumstances and causes conspiring against us. Absenteeism, good and bad refereeing decisions, incorrect tactics, under-performing players and the lack of a natural instinctive goalscorer (something that we have been blessed with for the past 10 years or so) all contributed to the whole.
Injuries to many players, brought not only their season to an early close, but in some respects ours as well, Mike Adair ; broken leg, Mark Willis; fractured tibia, Micky Stone, Steve Lankham, Jeff Prevost, Simon Putland, Graham Dinning. Recurring injuries to other players, Mike Williams, John Whelan, Tony Andrews, Mark Woolford, Cortez Griffiths. In effect losing such key players, ensured that our season spluttered from one week to the next. As the season progressed a total of 56 players entered the fray, not an ideal situation if you are looking to have a settled team.

Anyhow let us not be too downbeat, too introspective. Teams are promoted and relegated year in year out, all in all the essence of league football. To avoid flippancy, perhaps ‘Que sera sera’ applies. However, it is the manner in which you conduct yourselves within that league and team framework, the effort you give, the attitude you have, and just as importantly, sticking around for a drink after the match with your mates in any clubhouse, at any ground, irrespective of the outcome, in victory or defeat.

Although there were many lows, one afternoon in March, remains firmly fixed in the consciousness. Our first league victory of the season, away to Phoenix, no mugs mind you. The 2nd and 3rd XI games were called off, and their arrival at Slough BR ensured that we turned up with a potentially huge playing squad. On leaving the changing room ‘mob-handed, we proceeded to play our best football, practically and tactically. With a mixture of (past their best?) seasoned old timers and newly blooded players, we ran out very worthy winners. Those particular 90 minutes for everybody present linked with the OTs, epitomised everything that is good about being part of this club, never mind just the 1stXI. Everybody, including supporters or subs/squad players on the line, as well as the players created a spirit and atmosphere that made you just want to be part of the club.

Despite being slap bang in the middle of a very difficult and demoralising season, for old and new members, this game showed that there could and would be more great afternoons in the future, so long as we remain committed to the cause.

In difficult times, the good can so easily be neglected. The team had many minor achievements, and if we take these aspects forward positively, there are many encouraging signs. When Gerry Reardon rejoined the team, he encouraged us to play a passing game, difficult for some of us at the best of times. Very quickly, it gave players the confidence they needed, and points became more attainable.

It takes a certain kind of player to transcend the norm, and despite the team lacking overall quality, two players in particular managed to maintain a semblance of past performance and contributed vastly to the team achieving some respectability. But for Paul Kent (on and off the field) and Jerry Reardon, the ignominy of 1 point for a whole seasons efforts, which looked a distinct possibility, was avoided. To play well in a great team is simple and for these two fellas, relatively easy, but this season their play and influence week in week out, under very difficult and for them both different circumstances was priceless and enabled some pride to be restored.

I am as proud of our 1stXI’s history as the next man, but that history must not hold them, the new 1stXI, back. The last couple of seasons have seen serious and distinct changes in not only the 1stXI but the club as a whole. That has culminated in the first three elevens, the senior teams, all finding themselves at the bottom of their respective divisions. Changes should occur on the back of championship successes and good times. Instead we find ourselves looking for changes with our backs to the wall, a position many older OT’s know only too well.

There were many promising signs, green shoots of recovery, you could call them, and although 56 players were utilised, it gave all of us an opportunity to see whether players who may not have received a 1st team chance so soon, were and could be of the right mettle. A good number of them came through.
Youth, not a dirty word at all, Swedish possibly. Get ‘em in, I say. 6thXI players against Aloysians, all under the age of consent, Steve Forrest, Chris Porou, Richard Byrne, Gordon , and ??? Mitchell (maybe 21), proved more than able and upheld 1st XI/club honour in an end of season/rub salt into the wound clash, and loved every second of it.

Like the afternoon at Phoenix, when our day came, for a brief moment, I feel strongly that if the 1stXI/club can regroup, rebuild, find itself again. Concentrate on the young and good, without forgetting the old and experienced, plan ahead rather than fire-fight from one week to the next, and when the time is right, they will rise from the ashes of relegation and be an equal force if not bigger than that of the past.

Players need to ‘show’, need to put themselves on the line, reach the form that is achievable with concentration and basically put the team/club first and foremost on every Saturday. Essentially we all know as individuals what we need and have to do.

Glen Cain


2nd XI
Dismal. That’s the only word to describe the arse-end of the 2nd XI’s 2000-2001 season which, like the weather, went from bad to worse as winter turned to spring. Losing the backbone of the side – Harry Spawton, Stuart Watt and Gerry Reardon – to the First XI in what turned out to be a futile bid to keep them in the Premier, certainly didn’t help, allied to the loss of the two Watsons to suspension. Although there were encouraging signs from the youngsters drafted in with the help of Tenison’s teacher ‘Silky’ Steve Lanckham, it wasn’t enough to halt the dramatic slide that saw our figures of W3 D3 L3 at Christmas end up W4 D3 L 15. And you thought Leicester were shite!

Unlike Leicester’s Peter Taylor though, it would be harsh to attach any blame to Mick Walton, who battled gamely all season to put out a side capable of taking points in crucial double-headers in a League we were patently not good enough to be playing in. We went something like eight matches without scoring a goal and when your losing streak stretches into double figures, the belief that you might ever win again starts to ebb.

With four going down from the Division, we were left with a target of around 18 points to take from our remaining ten matches – not impossible as the teams we had to play were hanging around there or thereabouts with us – to have any hope of staying up. But double-header capitulations to Aloysians, Hamptonians, Salvatorians (where even roping in some bloke sunbathing on the touchline didn’t help) and runaway leaders Woking, plus a nine-man evening defeat at St Mary’s, left us deep down and decidedly dirty.
The highlight of the season though was still to come – a final match on a sweltering day match against bottom of the league Phoenix. If we couldn’t win that we might as well all hang ’em up. An All-Stars XI featuring the likes of Taffy Evans, John Barnes, the return of Ian Lloyd, plus Scouse Gazza having his first run out since 1976 and Ronny Byrne, a marvel in goal, travelled to Slough, battled like a Tenisons team should do and eventually won 3-2 with a Rob Ewart hat-trick. As the drinks flowed long into the night at the Dog & Duck, thoughts turned to the coming season and the hope that substantial reorganisation and nurturing of the young talent we saw emerging this year can turn the club around. Nobody wants another season like that one. Do they?

MARK BOOKER


3rd XI
Those of you of a certain age will be familiar with the film El Cid. In the final reel, the hero, despite being dead, is strapped to his trusty steed to once again put the fear of god into the enemy.
For Charlton Heston, read Terry Smith. Having been declared clinically dead in November, he was continually strapped into his boots and sent out to do battle against various centre halves of varying stature and ability, for the 3rd XI.
You may have gathered from my description of the teams centre forward ( first pointed out to me by the Mumblings film correspondent, Barry Norman, or is it Jonathon Woss, no it was Bob Blewer ) that the 3rd XI did not fair particularly well this season. Although we finished bottom of the league predominantly made up of 1st and 2nd XI sides, we were only well beaten on a couple of occasions and were unlucky not to have picked up more points along the way.
The most important thing is that on the whole, everyone enjoyed the season, maybe with the exception of ‘Scottie.’ Our long suffering goalkeepeer must have thought that the ageing bunch of individuals in front of him resembled nothing so much as a badly organised aerobics class on a Saga holiday!
Although most of the seasons results have become a blur, certain events remain fresh in my mind, one of which preceded the game against eventual divisional winners, Fitzwilliam. Fitzwilliam are made up of former students of that college at Cambridge Universtity and they possess the two attributes that we fear the most, namely, youth and fitness.
Having got to the ground early, Fitzwilliam were on the pitch well before kick-off doing the sort of stretches that an over enthusiastic porn star would have been proud of. With kick-off time approaching we started to assemble on the pitch in dribs and drabs, a sad sight to behold.
The final three players out of the dressing room were as follows:
Terry Palfrey. Odd socks. Shorts too tight. Carrying approximately three stones overweight. Limping with an imaginary injury, hoping to be sub’d before we’d even started.
Terry “El Cid” Smith. Forrest Gump style leg brace allowing absolutely no flexibility in his left leg. Already taking several strong pulls on his asthma inhaler.
Finally, Dickie Turner. Wearing any kit that can be found, cadged or stolen irrespective of size, style or colour. Carrying four, perhaps five stone overweight. Overall stature not helped by oversized bright orange puffa jacket ( Goodyear blimp style ) and looking ever so slightly tangoed. Topped off with a false moustache ( I think it was one of ‘The Rascal’ line ) that Dickie insisted on wearing all season.
The faces of the opposition shifted from mild amusement to incredulity, as one twisted, deformed body after another arrived on the pitch, like some sinister version of “Russian Dolls”. They only beat us 2-4, after we ran out of legs, literally in some cases, after about an hour, which only goes to show that appearances can be deceptive.
Thanks to all those who turned out this season. Special thanks to Michael Turner for persuading his friends to play, thus bringing the average age down to a respectable 38.75!
“Taff”.


4th XI
The early promise materialised as the 4th XI managed to achieve the treble in a hectic second half of the season under the astute stewardship of new player /manager, Steve Rodley.
The weather-affected fixture list, which saw them play only 2 league games before the 24th February and a total of 8 double-headers, was overcome to win the OBI & LOB cups, with the league sealed at John Fisher on the second May Bank Holiday weekend.
The only real disappointment came in the AFA quarter-finals against Mill Hill, when a game full of thrills and spills saw a 5-5 scoreline (after extra time) end with a Paul Glasgow penalty last seen bouncing off the Mir Space Station.
Highlights included, dare I say it (before he does), four goals for Rodley himself against the physical Sinjuns in the LOB final, Tenisons winning through 6-0. You could be forgiven for suggesting that it was avoidance of the physical, which enabled him to bag the four.
Other fine moments involved a fighting performance at Reigate in the second game of a double header, an extra time OBI semi-final victory against Finchley and 6 points from a Wednesday evening double header in Mottingham – the wrong end of the South Circular for the majority of the squad.
Comedy moments were, unfortunately, monopolised by Mike Jenkins in goal, although it must be said that he kept us in it on many occasions during his very welcome 19 appearances. The jewel in the crown was probably the Bambi-On-Ice performance against Glyn (or was it Finchley?), which saw him get to his feet and fall down again at least 3 times whilst a 40 yard goal-bound punt nestled gently in the corner of the net.
A total of 35 games were played with only 7 before Christmas, thanks mainly to the postponement of an AFA fixture against Isleworth for 7 consecutive weeks. The team did benefit from a large pool of players to draw on, 18 of which played at least 10 games, to get them through the congestion of the latter part of the season. Four players managed 30 games or above, with Dom Caisley playing in an impressive 32.
Equally outstanding was Brendan Martin’s involvement in 30 games without scoring at the right end – he did however manage a Jenkins-assisted own goal in the final game at Fisher.
At the glamourous end, Rodley and Simon Brewis tied on 21 goals each, with Rodley taking the prize on fewer games played. He probably won’t thank me for mentioning his tally of 8 in his last 3 games, which saw victory snatched from the jaws of defeat.
Finally, thanks go to anyone who helped us out when we couldn’t raise eleven and, particularly to Tel and Taff for their support as the 4ths provided them with a safe house on several matchless Saturday afternoons. Dave Brewis
Welcome to the Club lads, and many congratulations on a great season. B.B.
5thXI
Having heard nothing to the contrary, I can only assume that Sean Jones, who, as his teamates will tell you, was only a short chap, finally succumbed to the floods he described so graphically in the last issue. May I take this opportunity to extend my condolences to his team-mates. Condemned to a watery grave. Does anybody know if he had paid his subs?
6th XI
Having finally sobered up following a somewhat inebriated evening in Sutton, I have been ordered by the Ed to write the season report. Thankfully, some may say, this will be brief and pretty much to the point. I guess having skippered a side for the last two years, I am running a little low on the cliché front ( Never let it be said. Ed ) Apart from which I now only operate at my best following an exchange of words with my cohort, Ronnie Byrne.
Our start to the League campaign was impressive, five straight wins. Of course these weren’t played in five consecutive weeks, only when nature allowed. The team had started to gel and everybody played with great commitment. The younger members of the team seemed to mature with every game, listened and acted on the instructions given to them and responded to the example set by the more mature members of the team. The spirit in the team was great and Ronnie and I felt that everything was going in the right direction.
The break in between Christmas and the New Year seemed longer than usual but we remained upbeat about our prospects. Results took a bit of a dip when the Chairman, using his perogative, nicked some of our ‘yoof’ for the 3rdXI and playing so infrequently due to the weather, seemed like we were starting the season all over again every two or three weeks.
Our best League performance was by far the 8-0 victory at Guildford. The strength of the opposition has to be taken into consideration but I don’t think that I have ever seen a more impressive routing of a team at this level. The dream performance of the season though was the OBI semi-final victory against Glyn.
The first half saw Glyn trying to ‘bully’ their way to victory, however, this was to do them no good and a few of our boys became men that day ( See, I told you Ed ). Even injuries to Keith Kelly and Max did nothing to quell the spirit we showed that day, everybody playing to the maximum of their abilities. A 3-1 victory was a fair and just result and it was a delight to see the look of achievement on our team’s faces. Both Ron and I felt an enormous pride to be associated with a team capable of such a win. Thanks also to John Halsey for refereeing what at times was a difficult match.
In closing, thanks to: Perkins, Wright, George, Porou, Tonks, Farelly, Max, Byrne, Kelly, Mitchell, Malc, Pearce, Forrest and Keating for a most enjoyable season.
Keith Pickersgill.
‘He’s coming home, he’s coming home, Keating’s coming home!’
This July there’ll be a level of expectation in every butcher’s shop in Mayo, the bunting will be out and the streets will be lined with young children waving comestibles. One of the county’s favourite sons will be coming home to visit his many relatives and local dignitaries.
Mick Keating and his twenty strong entourage will be heading to Westport for a weekend of Irish culture in early July. It’s not so much lock up your daughters, more bolt up your larders. All the usual suspects will be there in a vast selection of garish shirts and dodgy caps! Leading the way will be David ‘Pumpo’ Clifford, sans chapeau, closely followed by our own Ian Woosnam, David Evans. The glamour will be provided by Bimbo Austin and Phil the flute. As ever the old boys of Blewer, O’Level, Reg, Iso, and Unners will be on hand to offer fatherly advice to Tonsky about the virtues of trying to vault from the shower to sink backwards.
Then there’s the quiet ones who just come along and keep themselves to themselves, talking about Michael Walton and Terry Palfrey here, in fact most times you wouldn’t know Terry was there. It’s a far cry from the pestering drunk that never stops talking and will never allow you to get away from his company normally.
Of course there will be a chance to see faces of old chums that have been in hiding since last year’s trip to Galway. Leading the way will be Lloydie Lloydie, currently studying every B road map in Mayo in his new abode in Cornwall. Still all this will be peripheral to the main event, the homecoming of Mayo’s favourite son. It will be a pleasure to be part of the event.
Gary Kedney.
Doubles.
Not as in the admitted longshot of betting on the Conservatives to win the election coupled with Frank Bruno taking a break from pantomime to play Hamlet and not as in…..’thank you, mines a large one’. But doubles in that we’re all supposed to have one and I’ve spotted a couple.
The first ‘twin’, was spotted playing the trumpet at the Albert Hall, I can’t remember the orchestra, it might have been the Philharmonic, anyway, blond floppy hair, big belly and bags of wind. Yeah, your right, it could only have been Pickersgill. How did you guess? Its simply uncanny.
My second double is also a musician, one of the country’s leading tenor saxophonists, Don Weller. I’ve seen him thrice this year and on every occasions he played the whole set wearing a blue flat cap but from the eyebrows down, Don Weller is former OTA supremo Dave Clark ( the longer ).
Don is about fifteen years older than Dave, and I happen to know has lead the type of life that jazz musicians are supposed to. Which just goes to show what a tough job head-mastering must be.
B.B.


CRICKET
1st XI Report
The First Eleven have made a promising start to their league season back in the First Division. Of the five league games that should have been played by now, two were abandoned due to rain (Godstone and Lambeth Enterprise), one was lost (BBC) and two were won (Beddington Village and Purley).
For various reasons the team has not been at full strength for any of the games so far. The good news is that the players who might have been keen to play seem to have vanished who have come into the side have done tremendously well and have been a credit to the team and club. They have enjoyed playing at a higher level and have contributed significantly to the good start made by the team.
On the batting side, Nev Perkins has started well. He is setting a good example at the top of the order and hit an impressive ton against Purley. Dave Towse, Paul Kain, John Halsey, Jo Wallis, Grant Hubbard, Jim Butcher and the baseball batsman Chris Turner have all contributed well in the top/middle order.
The bowling has been good. Grant Hubbard is back to his best. Chris Turner, Nev Perkins and Jim Butcher have all bowled well, bowling two sides out in less than 45 overs. Cortez Griffiths deserves special mention for his bowling (yes bowling!) performance against Purley. Fielding a weakened team, Tez bowled tightly to set up a good and well earned victory.
Although a few catches have gone down (not mentioning any names Kaino and Ozzie!) the fielding has been excellent overall.
James and Graham Butcher will be back from university in the next few weeks to strengthen the team. The team is hopeful that Wayne Robertson will also be available on a regular basis from now on, following a number of business commitments that have prevented him from playing in recent weeks.


2nd XI
The cricket season is with us yet again and I could probably write the same first paragraph as last season. (I think you have, Mick. Ed.) We experienced another very wet start coupled with the familiar apathy of some players. Initially the prospects of fielding three stronger sides than last season looked very good, but alas, players seemed to vanish into thin air. The hope of footballers wanting to play dwindled and as usual we have struggled to field three sides.
We played a friendly on 5th. May against St. Luke’s, the side that replaced us in division 3. Winning the toss and batting on a wet wicket Tenisons reached a respectable 150 for 8 off 45 overs. Micky (54) Barry (22) and Chris Turner (26*) scoring the bulk of the runs. Tight bowling from Brian Lester (4-30) Chris and Barry restricted St. Luke’s to 92 all out. A promising start to the season.

On 19th May we played our first league game, at home to the BBC. Having won the toss the opposition batted first on a very wet wicket because they only had seven players to start. Good bowling by Brian and Tony and 2 run outs restricted the Beeb to 45 for 5 in the first 24 overs. Steady bowling by Jake Short and Barry restricted the run flow and after their 45 overs were 134 for 7. (Alright Barry, I didn’t mention the last over!)
Sadly, there isn’t much to say after that, Micky (13) Joe Wallis (13) and the other nine batsmen 13, 48 all out!!
The following Saturday a friendly against Honor Oak was cancelled because of a lack of players.
On 2nd. June we played our next league game at Addington with 10 men as one player did not show. They batted first and raced off against some rather wayward bowling, reaching 60 in 10 overs before we took their first wicket, a run out! Barry bowled his 12 over for only 22 runs, restricting the run rate at one end and the return of Brian (5-48) took the 2nd wicket at 151 in the 33rd over. By this time Gary Parsons (3-59) had found a good line and length, taking his first league wickets for the club, he and Brian removed the last 8 batsmen for just 48 runs. Addington finished on 199.
Again, our batting could not match our latter bowling and fielding performance, only Joe with 25, making any reasonable contribution with the bat.
On the second Saturday of June the third team fixture was forfeited and a fine of £50 incurred on the club. A considerably weakened 2nd XI played at Norwood and with the good efforts of Paul Langford (28) and Jim O’Dell (30) scored 114 for 9 in their 45 overs. Norwood scored the runs without any great scares for the loss of just one wicket.
Saturday 16th June, every league game around was cancelled, mainly without a ball being bowled, that is except ours, at Morden. They must have thought us an easy 20 points and were determined to play. The wicket as very wet and after nine overs the rain came and washed out play for the day. Shame really, we had one of our stronger sides out, well who knows?
Whilst writing this, with the game against Deando coming up, it’s another weekend with just 2 matches, Come on guys we need some players!
The spirit in the side is excellent as always.

Micky Vaughan.


Sunday Taverners XI
Once the wet weather finally went, our first Sunday game was against Magdalen. Batting first against a steady pair of opening bowlers we scored 178-7 in 41 overs (Butcher (72), Halsey (45) and Kain (20). Our opening bowlers Turner and Butcher kept a very tight line and length frustrating the batsmen reducing them to 69-6 in 20 overs. Not to make a boring draw, Kain came on to offer some buffet bowling (help yourself) to make their score more respectable. An old Tenisonian player James Barling made a solid 74 not out but could not match our total ending the game a draw. Jim Butcher was the pick of our bowlers 4/49
Our second game was against Malden Wanderers where we were told they had a rather good Aussie player. If fact he was playing to gain a net!!
Batting first we didn’t have the best of starts 17 for 3 but a solid 44 from Vaughan and two useful 20’s from Butcher and Kain pushed our score to 140 all out.
The Aussie opened the batting and scored a classy 81, with a 57 from the other batsman they reached 141 without losing a wicket. After the game we did have a quiz night from their captain who knew anything and everything about football and cricket where as usual Kain found the questions to hard and didn’t get any right!!!
Woldingham Village (nice ground shame about the team). Won the toss and decided to bowl on a very mossy wicket, Butcher 4/25, Turner 4/37 and Kain 2/13, bowling them out for 77. Joe Harmston opened the batting with Neil Perkins; Joe went without scoring so Mick Towse played a very good innings (19) with help from O’Leary (18) and Nev Perkins (13) to see us home. So with an early finish what better than having a curry afterwards.
Clapham Old Xaverians. This is the first time I have ever played against this team although they play in the Saturday league I’ve heard a lot about the team and their captain B.Benedict.
John said they can be a bit loud and B.Benedict is always pissed. (John was not wrong). After I had a chat with their captain he said don’t bother with a toss have a bat and we will chase. Well his team talk went a bit like this….”1,2,3,4,5,6 you two umpire, I’m going down the pub call me if you need me”
We bowled pretty well Turner 3/62, Kain 4/22 and Paul Bradley claiming his first Sunday wicket 1/6 bowling them out for 135. There was a funny moment during the game as B.Benedict was called from the pub to bat at number eleven, he was that pissed he did a Bob Willis and came to the wicket forgetting to pick his bat up. (He didn’t last long). Our reply was not up to our high standards being bowled out for 113 with only Butcher (26), Lingard and Nev Perkins (19) putting up a real fight of it.
Eastern Wanderers. Well in the end we won, once we doubled checked the scorebook. We lost the toss and they elected to bat. To cut along story short they made 221-2 and we dropped 8 catches, it was one of those days!!
After tea the score had changed to 211-2, in the first over we lost Neil Perkins for 0 so Nev Perkins joined Vaughan and they put on a partnership of 67. Nev had just hit a ton on Saturday and carried on from where he left on hitting the ball all over the ground. Once Nev was out (103) we needed around 8 per over, Halsey and Kain had a partnership of 32 in quick time followed by a partnership of 34 between Butcher and Kain.
In the end we just couldn’t get the runs from the last over with Kain (49*) and Osborne (11*) making a total of 208-5. Match drawn? Once we checked the scorebook they scored 204-2 and we made 215-5, thank god it was Sunday game and not a League match!
Paul Kain.


How the Duke of Westminster gave me the ‘ump.
The Government’s handling of the economy might have persuaded enough people to vote them into a second term of office and Gordon Brown is thought of as a god at the Treasury but Patrick and I recently discovered first hand evidence to show that inflation is about to gallop out of control again.
We were about to meet brother Mark at a boozer in Wardour Street, before going on to Ronnie Scott’s to celebrate Mark’s birthday. Just before we got to the pub, our conversation was interrupted by a seated beggar, who smilingly wondered whether we would be donating £20 cash, a cheque book and cheque card, or perhaps it might be more convenient to hand over a credit card with relevant pin number. After giving the request due consideration, I decided to hang on to my credit card, which was fortunate, because I was to need it later on.
After an excellent night’s music, Patrick and I were walking back to the car, parked just off new Bond Street, where I have parked many times over the last few years, only to find it wasn’t there. It was also then that I realised that where I had parked had been changed to a residents parking area, so I knew I’d been towed. We walked round to Vine Street nick to find out the procedure. I was given the relevant phone number and was told that if I wanted to pick the car up, I had to go to the car park on Park Lane, which also contains the car pound for offenders in the Borough of Westminster. The cost of retrieval was £165. Patrick subsequently told me that my normally sunny temperament suddenly changed to something like John McEnroe’s after a dodgy line call.
OK guv, I know it was a fair cop but of all the people in England who I resent giving my cash to, its got to be Gerald Cavendish Grosvenor, Duke of Westminster and richest geezer in the country, whose current wealth is estimated at £4.6 billion. Mind you owning them two blue bits on the monopoly board always helps doesn’t it?
B.B.
That’s almost it for this issue. On the final page you will see the results for the first six months of the 150 Club. Mick is once again, asking you to dig deep and I hope you will support Mick in his efforts to help the Club with its bank balance.
Finally, although you might not believe it from this publication, my major concern for this Club is its present and its future. I can say that, because I know that its past will look after itself. If today’s active members are as committed to the Club’s future, as in previous generations, I believe it is of the utmost importance that they demonstrate that commitment by serving on all the relevant committees, including the parent body, the committee of the Old Tenisonians Association.
This issue of the Mumblings has once again dwelt far too long in the past, I can’t help that, that’s where I come from. Whilst I was still playing for the Club I felt I was in a privileged position in trying to bridge the Club’s past with its present. Having retired from playing, I no longer feel I can carry out this function. Today’s members should be reading about what they do today, not the all our yesterdays which I churn out here. And so I ask you young guys to come forward and become more involved in your Club. We need to find both a new editor for the Mumblings and a printer. Until somebody comes forward, I will continue to do my best, perhaps for another couple of issues but if nobody does, the Mumblings will be forced into mothballs, not for the first time.
Thanks to everybody who contributed, to Brian Lester who is once again helping out with the printing and to Alan Baker for distribution and to Patrick for helping with all the technical bits.
Hope you all have a great summer, particularly all those parents who are awaiting the exam results of their offspring. Chill out!


Bob Blewer
286 London Road
Wallington
Surrey
SM6 7DD

Tel.No. 0208 647 4670





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Motspur Mumblings Edition 14  Summer  2001