Happy 20th Anniversary To Our SA Lions
I noticed this facebook post earlier from a good mate of mine Reza:
HAPPY BIRTHDAY SOUTH AFRICAN VILLA SUPPORTERS CLUB. Today marks 20 years when we kicked it off.
We've had some great years together and will continue into the future...all for the love of our football team.
Too many people to thank, you know who you are, you made it happen for us but I have to give a shout out to Jules M Turner who started the club with me and who put in so much to make it succesful. David Leslie Kinman also a founder member and who is largely responsible for the conitinuation of the club through his overseeing of our sunday league side. Richard Dobson, also a founding member and past chairman, who helped steer our club into a new direction during his time in charge.
Its been magical - we've had some great Villa times and whilst the current plight of our team is worrying, Villa supporters remain hardcore...and personal.
UP THE VILLA! ...heres to the next 20 years.
So I got in touch with Reza and asked for a bit more. He explained:
'Villa supporters club started in November 1992 after I returned form one of my trips to Villa Park. I put an ad in the paper and received an overwhelming response from Villa fans.
One of the fans was a guy called Julian Turner who I ahd heard about at Villa Park. He was the 7th caller. We arranged to meet and quickly set about arranging our inaugural meeting, which took place on Monday 19 Nov 1992.
The meeting was a massive success with about 100 fans turning up.The rest as they say is history.
In 1994, Aston Villa toured SA and we were fortunate to host the entire team at our club headquarters. Villa played Liverpool and a couple of local teams in a typical end of season tour.
Throughout the years, Villa fans from SA have been travelling back and forth. Up to five years ago we`d have at least one member of our club attend games every other week. Over the last five years, the global recession made travelling more difficult and more expensive yet we still have members travel but not as regularly.
Today marks 20 years……amazing achievement so far away from B6. Villa were top of the pile when we started and unfortunately we`ve dwindled to the bottom three at the time of writing.
Still, our love for our club is un-wavering and we will continue to support the mighty Villa back to our glory days'
Cheers to Reza Bodiat, top achievement and a top mate. He flew over from SA earlier in the year when I was at my height of illness (as did another friend, Villabrownie from the US of A)...
Some very special people in this Villa family of ours...!