Killing The Old Spotted Dog: The Battle To Save Clapton FC


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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10 Responses

  1. Tony T says:

    Very sad – a lot of fond memories of that ground and the people whilst following Isthmian Div 2 football.

  2. Andrew Barr says:

    Thank you for this excellent and factually correct article which sets out some of the problems at the Old Spotted Dog. I am pleased to report that Mr McBean has said that he has filed accounts (although the Companies House website is yet to be updated to confirm this). Assuming this is correct, then the immediate forfeiture of the lease is allayed, however, the problems remain.

    With the help of Supporters Direct, the aim must now be to place the guardianship of the this famous old sports ground in the hands of a group that not only wishes to retain it but improve facilities for it’s existing users and make it more accessible to it’s community.

    As for the Clapton FC , there are issues regarding membership and the club Chairman, Mr Murray-Smith has said that “membership of the club is closed”. It is probable that no actual membership is being run by Mr McBean. According to the existing three life members, there have been no AGMs, no elections for committee members or officer and no accounts have been disclosed for some years.

    The may lay in the hands of these three existing life members who, in turn, are taking advice from Supporters Direct to revive Clapton FC in manner that the tradition of this famous old club demands.

    Thank you to the members of the Friends of Clapton FC, Supporters Direct, Non League Fans, Forum Users, Groundhoppers and those who have spread the word about Clapton in recent months.

    Keep the faith, and I am sure that the eventual of objective of a good, well run, democratic football club playing senior football at a secure, pleasantly appointed football ground in the heart of East London may yet be achieved.

    If anyone would like any other info (we operate perestroika) on our group, the club or the ground. Don’t hesitate to get in touch.

  3. Andrew Barr says:

    Companies House have confirmed that the accounts ave been submitted and the striking off process has been cancelled.

    The accounts for the NCLT can be found on our website

  4. Bernard Carvell says:

    Good luck in your efforts to save the club and the ground.
    As a long time Wycombe supporter the Spotted Dog was one of our favourite away trips, an almost certain win plus a decent meal and pint in the pub.
    Never forget from whence you came, you may end up back there.

  5. Andrew Barr says:

    Thank you for your kind wishes. I remember many of those excellent WWFC teams with the likes of Searle, Horseman, Maskell etc in their line up. The pub is now derelict but the Clapton welcome will soon be back in full swing.

    As a supporter of the Tons, we would like to get back to whence we came (haha)

    As Sam Cooke said “it’s been a long, long time coming, but I know …………….. “

  6. Jack Hodges says:

    Is this the same Vince McBean who was allegedly responsible for driving Woodford Town into oblivion ? What happened to the insurance payout for the fire at Woodford’s former Snakes Lane ground Mr Mcbean ?

  7. Andrew Barr says:

    The Vincent McBean, referred to in the article is the same chap who was chairman of Woodford Town FC

    I know nothing about the fire or the plight of Woodford Town, however, it may be extremely relevant to what is happening at the Old Spotted Dog.

    I would be grateful if you would email me privately.

    Thank you

  8. Ian Evans says:

    All the very best for the future.
    As a long time fan of Walthamstow Avenue, I have many fond memories of visits to ‘The Spotted Dog’ and I would hate to see yet another famous old east London club disappear.

  1. June 25, 2013

    […] Of Clapton (FOC) initiative was set up by a former committee member, ostensibly as a response to concerns surrounding the long term future of the club. The FOC’s primary aim is to “help those who run, administer and play for the Tons” with […]

  2. August 12, 2013

    […] The club and the ground have had a Weymouth-esque pall of uncertainty hanging over them for a number of years, for a variety of reasons, most of them seemingly revolving around a chap called Vincent McBean. We won’t pretend to grasp the ins and outs and, as we don’t have a legal budget until the sponsorship comes in, a précis can be found on the always reliable non league wikipedia, 200%. […]

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