Digby Street, groundhop, Keyworth United, Kimberley Miners Welfare, Kimberley Town, Notts Senior League, Pentrich Revolt, Rob Hornby
Saturday 20th April 2013 ko 18.15
Notts Senior League Senior League Senior Division
KIMBERLEY MINERS WELFARE 7 (Chaplin 14 Fisher 22 26 50 Baker 54 Beecham 63 Wilmott 90)
KEYWORTH UNITED 0
The Nottinghamshire town of Kimberley was known as Chinemarelie in Domesday Book. With the accession of William to the throne Kimberley came into the possession of William de Peveril, and over the centuries the estate changed hands with the turning of each political tide, eventually being sold piecemeal in the 19th century. The town became a centre for coal mining, brewing and hosiery manufacturing, but one by one these closed, the final one, the brewery closing in 2006, after being bought out by Greene King.
When organising these events it is always handy to have an ace up your sleeve, something that will attract the stragglers. Potentially this was Kimberley MW’s last first XI game at Digby Street, as they have taken on the Stag Ground, the home of the now defunct Kimberley Town. That ground needs work to get it fit for use, so the move may be delayed, but I reckon it may well have concentrated a few minds!
Near to here, in 1817, the last attempted English Revolution took place. The Pentrich Revolution started in the village of Pentrich, north of Derby, where they discussed an uprising and a proposed march on London. It was badly supported and ill-fated, and an agent provocateur infiltrated their ranks, and this ultimately led to their capture and execution. The 9th June 1817 was to be the start of a national uprising that was to include men from Huddersfield, Wakefield, Leeds and Nottingham. Their forces were to meet at Nottingham and then march to London to overthrow the government. Despite the promise of a wider national uprising it was only the men of Pentrich who marched that night. They reached Kimberley, were met by government troops and fled. The ringleaders Jeremiah Brandreth, William Turner and Issac Ludlam were all found guilty of High Treason and were hanged then beheaded on 7th November 1817.
The issue for footballers playing at Digby Street over the years was where to get changed! The players have at various times changed in a local kitchen and in the basement of the local bowling alley. There’s a lot to like here and congratulations to MW for putting a club history in the programme, I’m sure I’m not the only one who likes reading them. The ground lies next door to where the Digby Colliery once stood. The light industrial units, and the railway waggons on the nearby roundabout are the only clue of the coal mining that once took place here. The issue was dealt with once and for all in 1995 when the changing rooms were bought from Calverton Cricket Club!
The club had thought intelligently about how to host their game. Many clubs do barbeques, to the point that when I organise a groundhop I generally advise against them- there is burger overkill after a while! MW’s was an honourable exception to the rule, the queues spoke volumes for its success.
In the clubhouse a printer was set up, allowing up-to-date teamsheets to be produced, but it was the merchandise stall that intrigued me. Kim Hedwall from Stockholm, Sweden is a good mate of mine, we organise a groundhop in Sweden each year, and one of the MW’s shirts caught my eye. It transpires MW’s change kit is yellow and blue, Swedish national colours, and with the shirt having IKEA as the sponsor, well it was a match made in…..well Kimberley!
It set things up nicely for the final game of the hop which looked unlikely to be anything other than a home win. Keyworth needed a win to escape from the bottom two relegation spots, but their resistance lasted a mere 15 minutes. MW rolled in 7 and in all honesty could have made double figures had it not been for some poor finishing. The plaudits should go to Jake Fisher for his hat trick, but this was an excellent team performance from a friendly club, who did themselves and their town proud in the time quite literally in the sun.
The other person they did proud was organiser Rob Hornby. I’ve been there myself, you give clubs an opportunity and an idea, what they do with it is up to them. I’m sure when Rob finished his drop-offs, and the coach was back in the garage and him back home in Mansfield, he looked back on his hard work on the first NSL hop, and feel quietly satisfied. The rest of the hopping world will be grateful he still does it. Thanks mate!