Thirty years ago today I went to my first football match, at Bootham Crescent. I’ve been reminded of this by an embarrassing teenage diary I’ve recently been reading. Which records, in rapidly scrawled blue biro, ‘I was surprised at how exciting it was’.
It was a particularly exciting one. Quite excited today also to find that there’s this short clip on YouTube, including the celebratory scenes after the game. ‘Wish I’d taken my camera’ I wrote in the diary. (Then I could have got a load of blurry photos of the backs of people’s heads, like I usually do …) This video is much better. It’s fab.
My ancient yellowing handwritten account covers a page and more of A4, and barely records the match itself as I found the crowd more interesting, particularly when at full time most of us invaded the pitch: ‘an amazing sight’.
Later we went to Exhibition Square for the open-top bus. The diary records a scene which (as the video also shows) was in many respects just like other victory parades by York City FC, like the one a couple of years ago. Though there’s a little period detail in there, recording and reminding me what 1984 felt like …
‘Everyone was lining the pavements, climbing on the walls, sitting on bus shelters, singing and abusing the police. Good atmosphere though – it wasn’t malicious abuse, just songs about “Maggie Thatcher’s black and white army”.’