My Matchday - 142 Hebburn Sports & Social Ground

Hebburn Town 1v3 Tow Law Town
FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round
18th August 2007

Hebburn is a small town in the district of South Tyneside, the towns’ biggest employer Reyrolles formed a works team in 1912, playing in the Jarrow & District League up until the First World War, between the two wars the club played in various leagues on Tyneside, winning their only championship in the Tyneside League in 1938-39, as well as success in winning many local cup competitions.
In 1960 the club began playing in the Wearside League, where they had 28 unbroken seasons including winning the title in 1966-67, they didn’t add Hebburn to their name until 1986 when the club raised their ambitions, making ground improvements and hopes of stepping up into the Northern League, this was achieved in 1989-90, as they became the first club from South Tyneside to gain entry (South Shields and Jarrow Roofing were to follow) like the factory the famous Reyrolle name by then was no more, just basic Hebburn until the Town bit was added in 2000.
The club won promotion in their third season, their first of two spells in the First Division resulted with a best finish of 11th, ‘The Hornets’ last relegation was in 2001 and have remained in the Second Division since, but today it wasn’t about league action, only 90 days have gone by since the FA Cup Final, so it’s time to get this seasons competition under way with the Extra Preliminary Round.
Hebburn Sports & Social Ground is exactly that, it’s a Sports Ground with a Social Club within the complex, as well as being the home of Hebburn Town FC there’s a cricket field, all weather 5-a side pitches, tennis court and even a bowling green which are all situated bordering the football pitch, the ground has one covered main stand, which has approx 100 blue flip seats and behind each goal are small narrow standing areas.
The main part of the social club (the drinking bit) is up a flight of stairs and has a great window view, looking down on to the cricket pitch and across towards the football ground, the exterior is also used as the cricket scoreboard, the changing rooms are further back near the main car park, which favours the cricketers but is a bit of a walk for the footballers. The ground could do with making the grounds bordering walls a bit bigger, the number of times the ball got kicked on to the main road which runs past the ground or towards the neighbouring houses, had the clubs officials and committee men’s piss boiling, it’s funny but with one side of the ground adjoined by a cricket pitch I can’t remember seeing the ball booted in that direction.
Wembley may well be at least a million miles away for these two teams, but the game was just as competitive as any game you’ll see in the 3rd round in January, played on a lush Wembleyesque pitch, Tow Law came away with a place in the next round with a fabulous second half display, leading but a single goal at half time thanks to a free-kick by Craig Tate on the edge of the box and a missed penalty from Hebburn’s Garry McCartney, the Lawyers overcame the setback of allowing Hebburn’s Michael Younger to equalise in the 52nd minute to totally dominate the last half hour. The victory was achieved with a brilliant individual effort from Craig Tate, who made space for himself on the edge of the box to fire past the keeper before setting up Peter Watling to give Tow Law a 3-1 win, but it should have been at least six if it wasn’t for their Arsenal type ‘fancy-Dan-like’ finishing.
With the Toon v Villa game kicking off at 5.15, I was able to attend this game and get into Newcastle just in time for kick-off, seeing the black and whites stripes of Tow Law winning may as acted as an omen for what lay ahead in my first Premier League attendance of the season, but I’m afraid it wasn’t to be, as that game lacked a Man of the Match display and a moment of magic to win the game, maybe someone in the Craig Tate mould could have done the trick.

Ground No.142 Hebburn Sports & Social Ground – Matchday Web album(15 pictures)


el Queso Grande said...

I could email you a scan of the programme from the Hebburn Town v Tow Law Town FA Cup tie, if it would be of any use?

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