100 Owners: No.97 – Graham White (Colne Dynamoes)

Ian

Ian began writing Twohundredpercent in May 2006. He lives in Brighton. He has also written for, amongst others, Pitch Invasion, FC Business Magazine, The Score, When Saturday Comes, Stand Against Modern Football and The Football Supporter. Ian was the first winner of the Socrates Award For Not Being Dead Yet at the 2010 NOPA awards for football bloggers.

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2 Responses

  1. Andrew Smith says:

    Nice article, and you’re right to highlight the mysterious unanswered questions. But it was of course three years earlier – 9 May 1987 in fact – when Burnley escaped relegation from Division Four on the final day at the Orient Game. I well remember the unwelcome prospect of our “noisy neighbours” (though of course they weren’t called that then) threatening to pass us on our way down the leagues even before their Conference promotion debacle.

  2. Mike Landers says:

    This takes me back. I was an innocent 15 year old at the time the whole rise started and it was truly a rollercoaster. The crowds suddenly shot up, the team was winning and the whole thing took on an enormously surreal air. 1800 people, perched right next to a pitch up in the freezing hills, no wonder they had such a home record.

    From memory, and from a good friend being closely involved with the Council and the club, the warnings about ground grading were not ignored. They did, however, run into local politics at its most small minded and petty. The club couldn’t upgrade Holt House as it was a council owned ground. Talks with the council regarding upgrading didn’t go far and would have been difficult. There was talk of a stadium, but the Labour controlled council wanted it in Nelson (heavily Labour), rather than Colne (heavily Lib Dem). One phrase that will always live with me “She won’t be ****ing happy until we name part of it the Susan Nike Stand.” (Note for lawyers: I have no idea how true that accusation was!)

    The other thing was that the Conference, having fought hard to get their precious promotion place to the Football League were terrified of Colne coming through the division like a hot knife through butter. In that last fateful season, Altrincham came to Holt House in the FA Trophy, and were leading the Conference at the time. They departed after a 5-0 thrashing. Dynamoes went through three qualification rounds, then 4 “proper” rounds, knocking off Conference clubs Northwich Victoria, Farnborough, Kidderminster Harriers before falling to Barrow in the two-legged semi-final. The Conference just didn’t want Colne in it – IIRC, when it looked likely that Dynamoes would ground share, a byelaw suddenly appeared that said the deadline for registering ground shares had passed two months earlier.

    The end, coming as suddenly as it did, knocked the town for six. Yes, there are plenty of questions that will never be answered, but I think everyone from Graham White downwards just got carried away. But what a bloody ride it was.

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