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Those Were The (Villa) Day's

Those Were The (Villa) Day's

Those Were The Day's

Not the Mary Hopkins song. I was just reminiscing and was thinking about the games I went to from the days gone by. I was brought up in Albert Road then Bevington Road after my dad died. I used to deliver the Evening Mail to old Herbert and Charlie Tabberner. I'd deliver to the Villa Café (corner of Nelson Road). There I'd get ribbed by Rioch, Ian Ross, Pat McMahon, Willie Anderson, Andy Lochhead.

I remember for the first time walking towards the Trinity and looked at that magnificent stand and that mosaic. It was awesome I stood there mouth agape looking in awe - so much so that even opposition fans would admire it and comment on it's magnificence. I remember the massive Holte End and the Bank on the Witton with the opposition fans getting drenched.

Standing near the back of the Holte looking at the blokes upside down with the legs in the V shape. The Left Side and Right Side Chants. The Songs sung so loud and proud - 'Francis Francis - I'd walk a mile and a bit to rub your face in the sh**' The words to the tune of Batchelor Boy!. Holte Enders in the Sky.

The floodlights with the unique AV shining on a match day and the noise from the biggest goal side stand in Europe. Standing with mates I grew up with from the age of 4 till they knocked down the Holte. The games I saw - Santos, Man U in the Semi, Liverpool 5-1, the local derbies with both sets of fans in the same ends. The loses the euphoria and the dejection - but still I came back.

As an Asian and one of the first coloured fans I felt so safe. Never got any racism and if anyone did say something - they got shouted down by fellow fans. True supporters. A real family. The games in Div 3. Travelling away with 1000's of Villa Fans and just the togetherness. Those were the days of 'real football' when you could play the game without some pansy rolling around as though they were shot. The atmosphere was unrivalled.

Who could forget the sit in on the pitch after the Preston game. The meeting at Digbeth Hall and turning up to Villa Park to paint and clean up the ground cos we were skint. The Doc - the fans booing Villa when we came on the pitch in our away kit - the Yellow and Blue. Once they approached the Holte we realised who they were and cheered!.

I miss that - I'm just sad that the new age fans missed out on so much. Just thought I'd write this. Sorry for the ramble but I'm feeling nostalgic in my old age.

The Villa cost me a marriage but I could never divorce my love for Aston Villa.


Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Date:Monday November 29 2010
Time: 3:41PM


What great memories mate. My favourite times were the mid 70's to early 80's - Little, Gray, Gidman and Mortimer. Any of us lucky enough to be around in the Saunders era were truly blessed. UTV.
jake findlay
29/11/2010 15:48:00
When I was young my Father said So I have something to say And what he told me I'd never forget Until my dying day He said Son You are a Villa fan And that's the way to stay Happy to be a Villa fan Until your dying day Thanks Naz - we must be about the same age!
Cheshire Villan
29/11/2010 15:55:00
When I was young my Father said So I have something to say And what he told me I'd never forget Until my dying day He said Son You are a Villa fan And that's the way to stay Happy to be a Villa fan Until your dying day Thanks Naz - we must be about the same age!
Cheshire Villan
29/11/2010 15:55:00
Not fair, I missed all that!
29/11/2010 15:56:00
Bang on the same age then!! You old fart.
Cheshire Villan
29/11/2010 16:13:00
Ha! Ha! Nice one godzvilla made me chuckle!!
29/11/2010 16:28:00
Yes - JF - Can't help it if I still got the looks and the permanent suntan and you look like a milk bottle even after 2 weeks in the sun!
29/11/2010 17:22:00
A milk bottle, his figure isn't that good Naz!
29/11/2010 17:25:00
So So right voice - many a game the crowd gave the players a lift - nowadays it's a matter of going to the game have a drink before kickoff - down to the bar before half time for another drink then off before final whistle. I think you're right - the "Sky" fan is now the norm. Shame - at least us "old uns" can have some tales to pass down to our kids and their kids.
29/11/2010 18:53:00
Really enjoyed you're memories Naz. And they mean a lot to me as well because like you I was an Aston lad and in fact, lived very close to where you lived! I feel like an old fart saying this, but no one can take those special Villa memories away from us and that makes me feel sorry for the younger guys who haven't seen Villa as League Champions and then hold the title of being the best club team in the whole of Europe by winning the European Cup.......Happy days?!
Thomas Holte
29/11/2010 19:18:00
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