Thom Crabbe recently got back in touch with the Club. Having spent some 20 years in London, he moved back to the area 7 years ago and now lives in Aspley Guise. Thom played for the Lions from about 1978 – 82/3 including a couple of years as captain. These are some of his memories, together with pics and further memories from Nick Alderson (his son & daughters all playing for Lions and Lionesses teams today).
“We played initially in the MK league usually coming runner up to Water Eaton – bit tougher than us! I remember beating Saffron Cubs 17-0 once. We then played in the Chiltern League mainly against teams in Luton and round about. That league was stronger and we were more mid table. St Joseph’s, an Irish Club team, were dominant and included a young Kingsley Black -later Luton, Forest and NI international – he was excellent”.
We won a couple of five a side tournaments. I remember winning an evening competition organised by Luton Town where their first time players were guest coahes for the night. We had Radi Antic who was really enthusiastic. After us he went on to manage Barcalona many years later. He also scored the goal that kept Luton in the old first division and prompted David Pleat’s famous skipping routine.”
“The team was run and coached by Simon Spoor, training at Aspley Guise Common and indoors at Lord Grey School in Bletchley. He had a little Fiat 126 which lads crammed into and we used to have a flask of coffee at half time. We played home games first at Fulbrook Middle School, then at Timber Lane in Woburn now an overgrown field and the old changing room still there, it was a bit of a slopey and heavy pitch. End of season awards at Aspley Village Hall”.
“We did tours to Belgium…. exciting as we played under floodlights and under age drinking! Also a team of German lads came over to play us”.
Nick Alderson also recalls playing the Belgiums both away and then at home, 11-a-side. “It was pretty unique for any team to have their own coach” (wheeled variety in the background).
“Mainstays of the team were Steve Lichfield, Paul Read, Nigel Pattison, Nick Circuit, Andy and David Stocker (twins- one in goal one striker!) Mark Whittle, Jonny Corbett ( who I think played for Aylesbury later). Quite a lot of lads actually from Woburn and think we had three teams at that time”.
Thanks to Thom & Nick for sharing their memories. If you have any memorabilia, pics, stories etc, or can just help fill in the gaps….. please get in touch:- firstname.lastname@example.org