Unfortunately he won't be in tonight's programme, as he missed the print deadline, but will be back in print at our next home match.
Here's what he had to share ten days ago:
As we turn into September what an amazing August it has been, crowd wise. ‘Traditionally’, in recent seasons as our attendances have gradually grown year-by-year under the tenure of Gavin Rose combined with our community profile rising across South London, we have still struggled ‘early doors’. To have three four figure gates in August when many of our fans are on holiday with their families has been amazing.
Today we face Hastings United in the FA Cup , again a competition where our attendances drop, compared to the average, but who’s to say what the gate will be today. Call me a silly old fool if you like, but I’d love another four figure crowd squeezing through the turnstiles this afternoon, specifically if we could pull in one thousand and sixty six punters! Think about it… For purely selfish reasons though I was gutted to have come out of the hat a home. Hastings United have one of the finest stands left in non-league football, the town is a mix of ramshackle and history…with plenty to see around the town, I’d have loved a long day trip there today! The town can get a ‘bad press’, but I, for one, would happily live there…if it wasn’t so far from Champion Hill! Hastings also plays a big personal part of my ‘Scottish footballing identity. When I was a young kid we didn’t have proper holidays like my friends, but in the summer of Seventy Four we had a cousin visit from Austria, so we had to ‘pretend to be normal’ and we had a ‘proper’ summer holiday, staying on a caravan site, down on the Sussex Coast, at Hastings. It was berthed in the ‘Meadowbank Field’ and that summer just so happened to be the first season of a Scottish side called Ferranti Thistle in the Scottish League. As a works named outfit they had to change their name…to Meadowbank Thistle…hence my ‘adopting them’ as my Scottish side! People have all sorts of tenuous links when it comes to choosing a side, but that’s probably as weird as it gets. Sadly they no longer exist, franchised away to the new town of Livingston. Which worked out alright in the end, as I now follow the results of The Spiders, namely Queen’s Park FC, who some of our fans-including myself- meet every summer in their 6-a-side supporters’ tournament.
Well that’s half of my column filled, but what’s that got to do with ‘community’..in truth nothing really, but I’ve knocked up a few columns in the last few weeks, and my mind’s a bit blank, so I’ve just taken the minor liberty of rabbiting on a bit to fill up the space, I hope you don’t mind too much…
But on a genuine community point, I recently had a meeting with our friends & charity partners from the Copleston Centre, and we’re going to promoting a number of events they hold over the coming season. This will be in this programme, and on our website, as well as our other social media outlets, such as Twitter & Facebook. Working hand in hand with a local group isn’t just about trying to raise money for them, it’s a merging of ideas, bringing together two local communities in our community, for the benefit of both. They do some marvellous work in the heart of our local community, with mental health groups, refugee organisations, the homeless…exactly the sort of initiatives that we have always been proud to support as the local Football Club. So keep an eye out for their activities.
Last season we worked with ‘Football Beyond borders’, who do great work using football as a tool for learning among children in schools across not just South London, but all across the capital and beyond. Tomorrow week, Sunday 10th September, they will have teams of cyclists peddling all over London ticking off football grounds in a fundraising challenge. Alongside the many big Premier League stadia which they will see through peddle power, they are also making a pit-stop at Champion Hill. To prove they have been here they will have to do a simple task, set by the FBB team, and we shall also have a refreshment table welcoming them with bottles of water and fresh fruit, as they take a little breather. If you fancy a couple of hours that morning welcoming them as they arrive then just speak to me and I’ll let you know the exact timings, once they’re confirmed in the week.
Thank you again for supporting the Club, and for taking the time to read this column rather than just flicking over the page!
Mishi Morath (Dulwich Hamlet Football Committee, community initiatives lead)