Big Day Ahead for Highgate

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This Saturday, 25th February, is 50 years to the day that current Midland League Premier Division club Highgate United`s Tony Allden was tragically struck by lightning.

To mark the 50th anniversary of the Tony Allden tragedy, tomorrow`s league game against Long Eaton United will be preceded by the official unveiling of the newly re-named ‘Tony Allden Stand’ in his honour.

The commemorations for the 50th anniversary, were first planned nearly two years ago, as the club began the search for Tony’s family and the team of 1967 in the hope of getting them all together once again. It was a long, arduous journey, but one that was thankfully fruitful, if not tinged with a hint of sadness along the way.

The club had countless help from neighbouring clubs, the Midlands football grapevine and the general public.

Highgate are proud and honoured to announce the new sign will be unveiled at 2pm by Tony’s widow Sue and sister Christine, both bravely making their first visit to Tythe Barn Lane since that tragic day in 1967.

They will be joined by players on that day; Tony Sawyer, Tony Hughes, Roy Taylor, Hughie Doherty, Trevor Jones, Gordon Cooper and Eric Taylor. Only one player, Maurice Donaghy is unable to attend, unfortunately for the club, but luckily for him, he’ll be away sunning himself somewhere a lot warmer than here!

On a sad note and regrettably no longer with us, are Tony Murphy, Micky Keeley, Tony Law and Trevor Quiggin. Trevor sadly passed away just before Christmas, a few months after the club had contacted him. His son Jimmy said, despite being ill, his dad had really been looking forward to meeting up with old friends again, but sadly for all involved Trevor didn’t win his final battle.

Joining Sue, Christine and the team of 1967 are friends and relatives of Tony’s, together with many other former players and visitors from Enfield who wish to pay their respects. In attendance, will also be officials from the FA, Birmingham County FA, Worcestershire County FA, Midland League and local media.

The committee at Highgate have also decided to make entrance to the game against Long Eaton FREE, but there’ll be an opportunity for spectators to ‘contribute what they like’ towards the costs of printing the forthcoming book ‘then suddenly’ which tells the whole tale of triumph and tragedy of Highgate’s 1967 FA Amateur Cup run and Tony’s short life (due later Spring) and the costs of arranging travel for the pre-season visit of Enfield Town for a ‘Commemoration Game’ due to take place in the summer.

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About Author

Former Swansea City and Kettering Town defender who has been managing the likes of Kettering Town u18s, Rothwell Town, Desborough Town and Wellingborough Town for 33 years as well as being technical director at AFC Rushden & Diamonds. Began in non-League journalism as editor of Team Talk magazine back in the early 1990s and then as editor of Non-League Daily, joining Pitchero to set up Pitchero Non-League in January 2011. Also works for the National League.

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