Off to the Shots
Aldershot tomorrow night. A name that always brings back some sweet childhood memories because it was at the Recreation Ground that I saw my first ever football match.
It was 1972, or it could have been 1973 but we were at a family friends in Camberley for the weekend and the Dad, Pete, was a regular at The Rec and offered to take me and my Dad along to a game.
Aldershot were playing Southport, or was it Stockport? Or Workington? Always annoys me that…. but I am more certain of the score. It finished in a 2-2 draw but what I remember more vividly is the ground.
We sat in a rickety old stand (which looks as if it’s not changed much) in a ground accessed through a park and surrounded by trees as high as the floodlights, which cast shadows over the pitch. I did get to go back to The Rec many years later but I’ve never seen Charlton there, although we did send a reserve team pre-season a few years back if I remember correctly.
I’m pleased to see from Aldershot’s website that an old work mate of mine, Graham Brookland, is still involved with the club. We were young whipper snappers at the time but back then in the early 90’s Graham was consumed by ways that he could help save the club he supported and of course during the same time we were embroiled in our own fight, so Graham and I had a lot in common.
Aldershot did sadly succumb to bankruptcy in 1992 but Graham, who is one of only two original shareholders in Aldershot Town Football Club, was one of many Shots’ fans who helped rebuild the club from the 3rd Division of the Isthmian League to promotion back to the Football League 16 years later.
The Shots’ story is a great one and The Rec is well worth a visit.