TT GROUNDHOPPING – Boreham Wood (PP) by Clive Hayward


Clive Hayward – Byehorse

Clive blogs about his away trip


Tuesday, January 17th – TWEET: 

@MarkAHirst: “I’d be amazed if Saturday goes ahead, frozen sold in these parts and cold every night between now and then.” 

Friday, January 20th, AM: 

Phone call from a friend: “You coming tomorrow?” “Well, Mark was pessimistic but I reckon we should give it a go.” “Great: see you at Newton Abbot tomorrow morning then.” 

Friday, January 20th, PM- TWEET: 

@BOREHAM_WOODFC: “We can confirm that tomorrow’s visit of @TUFC1899 to the LV BET stadium Meadow Park is NOT subject to any planned pith inspection. 

With tomorrow’s forecast mirroring today’s, our grounds team have inspected the pitch this afternoon and have no concerns.” 

Saturday, January 20th, 6.30 AM- 

Continue with very modest health kick. In earliest stages of “Couch to 5K” with Sarah Millican. Her Geordie encouragement is paying mild dividends, as I have discovered I can run for 60 seconds without keeling over. A few lengths of a frosty Windermere Rd followed by bacon & egg were a decent start to the day.  

8.20 AM- 

I jog onto the platform at Torquay railway station. Long story short, I had missed my intended bus because the Police had sealed off Castle Road so I opted for the train instead, being the only certain way to get to Newton on time to buy a few cans! Train is delayed. Could have walked it! 

9.15 AM- 

Next train is delayed too. They hadn’t managed to attach the pointy bit to another pointy bit at Plymouth and it is consequently only half the intended length. Luckily there is still plenty of room, and we get a table, where one of our number lays into the Takeaway Full English he has somehow procured during the unscheduled wait at Newton Abbot. Not sure I can get on board with baked beans in polystyrene but the chap pushing the refreshments trolley gave it his seal of approval.   

10.00 AM- TWEET: 



We arrive at Paddington and tube it to Euston Square, then leg it the short distance to The Rocket. Soccer Saturdays in London are always fun. Mainly out of towners like us hoping for a result but determined to enjoy ourselves no matter what. Five pints for £27 and people in Monopoly fancy dress? What more could we ask for? 

We are joined by Matty fresh from his own exciting journey from Newark. Why Newark? It’s a long story: a combination of West Coast Mainline carnage and the sweet nature of his lovely better half & her family.  

12.43 PM- TWEET: 

@BOREHAM_WOODFC: “Going to be a cold one today, Wood Army, make sure you wrap up warm.” 

1.08 PM: TWEET- 


1.33 PM- TWEET:    

 @BOREHAM_WOODFC: “The referee has expressed concern around an area of the playing surface. There is an (sic) planned inspection at 1.45pm”  

1.54 PM- TWEET: 

@GlapwellGladia1: “Your club is an absolute joke” 

1.55 PM- TWEET: 


We can confirm that today’s @TheVanaramaNL fixture with @TUFC1899 has been postponed due to the referee having concern about an area of the pitch. 

We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused”   

1.56 PM- 

On the pavement outside the pub, we start googling “QPR tickets”. It looks tricky, because it seems you need to be a member to buy a ticket this close to kick off. 

2.10 PM- 

“Sod it, let’s have a go anyway. Surely they’ll have a ticket office.” We pile onto the tube at St Pancras and ride a few stops to Shepherd’s Bush Market. 

2.40 PM-  

We arrive at Loftus Road. After a short wander around, we come across a ticket window next to a turnstile. @MattyHayward96 takes the lead. He explains that we are National League refugees, that we are desperate to watch a match and that are seven of us. 

“No problems lads: we’ve got 7 in a row in the Loftus Road Upper. Will that do you? That will be £230 please.” 

3.00 PM- 

After a much needed wee and a bit of pre-match singing (everyone hates Chelsea), we settled down for 90 minutes of Championship football. QPR 1, Swansea 1 wasn’t a game that will live long in the memory but you could tell it was a few notches up from Torquay. The players can do more with the ball. They are much more accurate and quicker in thought & deed. 

Loftus Road is a decent stadium. It’s old, but the stands are steep, were pretty full and for a midtable match between two uninspiring sides the atmosphere was pretty good. It was a decent salvaging of a frustrating situation for us.   

5.30 PM- 

We arrived back at Paddington in good time and with every intention of catching the 6.05 train home. There was unspoken conspiracy afoot however, and we managed to have another three pints in “The Pride of Paddington” (a pub name which never fails to make me smile because it’s only one step up from The Royal Standard!) before ambling onto the 7.05. 

What is the moral of this story? 

  • Never trust football clubs to do the right thing. 
  • Listen to your mates. 
  • Cook your own breakfast if you can!! 








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