I am not an Anti-Royalist. Let’s get that right out in the open from the start. I think they do a good job in some ways for Britain, but I do not want them rammed down my throat at every opportunity. I want to be able to choose how much I see of them and when I see it. So the concept of a Royal Wedding makes me shudder. I have no interest in what her dress looks like, cannot care a less that David Beckham has been invited and am completely non plused that it may rain. No offence Wills and Kate, it is just I have other interests.
But thanks all the same for the day off, and with the permission slipped signed by CMF I hunted high and low for something to do. And so was born, on the dining table of Northern Steve on Sunday 24th April 2011 at 2.31pm THE ROYAL WEDDING AVOIDANCE BEANO.
The one place I can control the media is in my car. I can plug in my iPod and drive. Nobody can get me there. But I needed somewhere to go? Well go north young man my angel/devil on my shoulder said. And lo and behold in front of me in the Non League Paper was the answer. A full set of fixtures in the Evostik League One North. Not just one game to chose from, but eleven of the beauties!
Places like Clitheroe, Skelmersdale and Prescot Cables never sounded so enticing. Because of the bad weather back in February, a whole round of games had been called off. And with a public holiday announced for the wedding, those ingenious chaps in the Northern League saved the souls of every football loving man in England. Take a bow whoever you are.
But surely a 400 mile round trip for just one game wasn’t justifiable? Well I’ll be blowed if Castleford Tigers were only playing local rivals Leeds Rhinos at 5.15pm as well. Football AND Rugby League. In one afternoon? On the royal wedding day? Surely this was treason?
A plan quickly formulated in my mind. Two teams sat within a 15 minute drive of Castleford. Wakefield and Garforth Town. But which one? Wakefield would be saying goodbye to their ground at College Grove, moving onto a nameless soulless venue I am sure next season AND once played West Ham United in the FA Cup 3rd round (under the name of Emley – long story), whilst Garforth Town once hosted THE Socrates, woolly hat and all for a game. Oh and the visitors Chester City still hadn’t won the league and would probably bring 100,000 away fans. Tough choice and one for the dice on Thursday I think.
Now travelling companions. Twenty three seconds after floating the idea on Twitter Andrew Gibney said he was in, as did numerous others. Of course Danny was up for this, and where Danny goes, Deaks and Dave would sure to follow. Within 15 minutes the car was full.
So that is the background to officially the best day of football in the season. Stay tuned to find out what happens…