This website iz dedecated to the Newcastle United groundhoppers
who follow the fortunes of the
team aroond the world
The ground totals include
competitive and friendly forst team, resorve team, junior team and Newcastle United X1 games that 'the mad-sad groundhopper' has attended, aall for Newcastle United games
only, in the last SEVEN decades***
(the mad-sad groundhopper!)***last count 352
UNITED XI 2 (McGovern 2)(2nd goal
assisted by 'Fink'!)
REDHEUGH PARK 1970
"IT’S ‘FINK’ TO ALLEN!”------“HE
CROSSES IT TO McGOVERN!”---
in the 'Teams' area of Gatesheed, Redheugh Park started oot as a greyhoond
stadium before South Shields Adelaide F.C. moved there, 'lock stock and barrel'
in 1930, and changed their name tih Gateshead F.C.
reason they moved was simple. It was because of low crowds at their Horsley
Hill groond in 'Shields', but!---the move did'nt work because of one reason.
James' Park was little ower a mile away across the Tyne, fans stayed loyal tih
the Toon, rather than follow their 'instant' new club from the 'Teams' that had
suddenly appeared on their doorstep!. (old habits die hard!)
todays world, it's easy tih see why it did'nt work. Lets take a hypothetical
look at what could happen nuw.
of poor gates, Michael Knighton, the former Carlisle United chairman, (him of
'space invaders' fame!) decides tih buy a futbaall club and relocate it to
Brough Park Greyhoond Stadium in the 'East End' of Newcastle, coz he believes
that Tyneside is big enough tih support two League teams, and he renames the
club 'Newcastle East End F.C.'!.
Would the good folk of Byker, Heaton and Waalker, desert the 'Black 'n' Whites'
tih follow their 'new club'???.
NEE WAY!---of course they would'nt!. But!---that's exactly what the Sooth
Shields board thought would happen at Gatesheed.
did'nt!---and they struggled on for thirty years on low crowds, before they
were finally kicked oot the League in 1960, after failin' tih gain re-election
when they finished third bottom of the old Fourth Division.
them days, the bottom fower teams had tih apply, 'cap in hand' to the other
clubs, for re-election!)
bottom two teams, on the other hand, who were Oldham and Hartlepools, were
was too far 'NORF' to travel for wor 'southern based cousins', so poor old
Gatesheed 'got the chop'!, which everybody at the time agreed, was the biggest
travesty of justice in the history of the Futbaall League!.
even rumoured at the time, that Newcastle had voted against them, coz they
did'nt want any competition!, which is hard tih believe, as on one day in March
1952 for example, anly 484 'hardy souls' torned up for a League match against
average gate for that season was 50,766!)
yih start cryin' in yer beer!, and to avoid borin' the 'pants off yih', aall
change the subject an' tell yih aboot the match!, which torned oot tih be one
of the last ever tih be played at Redheugh Park.
Park waz a canny little groond andwith
three sides covered it actually had more cover than St. James’ at that time!
(Anly the aad West Stand and The Leazes End were covered back then!)
the goal closest to ‘The Teams’ area of Gatesheed someone had had spay
painted---‘TERRACE END RAZOR GANG’ in huge letters on the back of the terrace
wall which was not the most welcomin’ sign for visitin’ supporters, but the
groond was in a rough part of toon
Newcastle team that neet included a mixture of forst team and reserve players,
and ah remember (for good reason!) that Geoff Allen was playin' on the wing.
who were then in the Northern Premier League, scored forst after five minutes
when 'one' Arthur Lumsdon converted a penalty.
Toon hit back after 18 minutes when Phil McGovern, a £15,000 signin' from
Albion Rovers, headed a tremendous equaliser.
the second half, ah was sittin' on a waall behind the scoreboard end goal, next
tih the old greyhoond track, when the baall was booted high into the air
towards the corner flag.
headin' straight for iz, so ah decided tih try an' catch it, but ah was dazzled
by the floodlights as the baall came doon.
mee 'mincers' on the baall, and even though ah was half blinded, ah managed tih
catch it! (nearly faallin’ backwards ower the waall in the process!)
actually touched the match baall!---ah was in a complete daze and just sat
there for a few seconds, rooted tih the spot with the baall in mee hands,
when!---Geoff Allen came chargin' ower and started wavin’ hiz arms aboot and
screamin' arriz, tih give 'im the baall, sharpish, so that he could tek a quick
waz ‘ruddy faced’ tih start with and he went bright red with anger az AH! waz
the one who waz haadin’ the game up, az far az he waz concerned!
a’d stopped shakin’, ah quickly hoyed the baall to him (before HE! hoyed ME!
off the waall!) and he took the corner kick. He centred it intih the box and it
went straight tih Phil McGovern, who rifled the baall into the net for the
on 'cloud nine', as ah felt that by touchin' the baall, a'd somehow contributed
towards the victory!??.
you me---ah went yhem a 'VERY HAPPY CHAPPY!' that neet!
on that year, some 'Toe-Rags' burnt the aad wooden main stand doon, but
Gatesheed were'nt covered by any insurance and they could'nt afford tih rebuild
it, and tragically the club folded.
Park was left tih the mercy of the local 'unofficial' demolition squad, who
preceded tih smash up what was left of the stand, and it was in a sorry state
by the time the 'official' demolition squad finally moved in with their
bulldozers and razed it tih the groond!.
sorry endin', if ever there was one!.
brighter note, Gatesheed reformed in the mid-seventies and moved in tih the
Youth Stadium (later renamed, The International Stadium) on the other side of
the town, where amazingly, for the second time in their history, they joined
forces with the 'Sand-Dancers' from Sooth Shields, who were forced tih
re-locate the eight miles alang the Tyne, once again?.
had been hoyed oot of their Simonside Hall groond tih mek way for a bloody
formed a new club caaled, Gateshead United F.C.
definate case of de'ja' vu, if ever there was one!)
side' pitches were built on top of the aad Redheugh Park in the 'early
nineties', when 'PITZ SUPER SOCCER' built a sports club on the site, so at
least futbaall iz still played there!.