Sunday 28th December 2014 ko 15.00
LOWESTOFT TOWN 2 (Ainsley 14 Woods-Garness 81)
GAINSBOROUGH TRINITY 0
The trains all terminate at Lowestoft, and one solitary piece of track strikes out towards the harbour 200 yards away before giving up, blocked by the crossroads. Yes this the most easterly town in the UK, unequivocally defined by fish, although I did wonder whilst having my lunch at the local Wetherspoon pub whether my scampi was locally sourced- I do have my doubts!
Of course Lowestoft is famous for being the hometown of the rock band, “The Darkness” rather overshadowing the fact that classical composer Benjamin Britten was born here! Darts fans will no doubt point out that shy, retiring Peter “Snakebite” Wright lives locally!
I was rather taken with two landmarks, a huge wind turbine nicknamed Gulliver sits close to the most easterly point of the UK, but I’ve never seen a grain silo sporting a Christmas tree!
The silo on Commercial Road has sported a tree each year since 1988 when Dudman Group employee Peter Hammond, decided to cheer up the mother of his then manager Alan Doy. For the first 15 years the tree was a real conifer before being replaced by the current 30 feet half tonne metal edifice featuring 40 metres of lights! It is certainly quite a sight 200 feet above the seafront! Is it Britain’s tallest Christmas Tree?
Lowestoft Town can’t claim to be the most easterly football ground in the UK, that honour lies with nearby Kirkley & Pakefield, but there’s many reasons to pay Town a visit apart from mere geography.
With the back alleys opposite Crown Meadow on Love Road, evoking past times, it was good to visit a ground with the nooks and crannies you simply don’t see in modern stadia. In fact so well appointed is the ground that its easy to forget how recently the club progressed from the Step 5 Eastern Counties league, taking promotion after winning their championship in 2009.
Certainly the entertainment on offer was light years away from those days, Lowestoft passed and moved with skill, and the only thing that was missing from their play was a the killer touch in front of goal. Two goals was the very least their domination deserved, as the temperature dropped and the spectators shivered.
I enjoyed the fans’ company, the conversation was intelligent, with the Lowestoft fans enjoying their elevated status in a division with no less than 6 former Football League clubs in it, can you name them? The game finished, and I strolled back the car with a smile on my face despite the monstrous trip home. In the final analysis there isn’t a much better compliment you can give a place is there?