Easter is one of my favourite times of the year, why? It’s a 4 day weekend which means plenty of football! I have a really busy period with 10 matches planned in just 8 days which includes 2 days off! The first two games had already occurred prior to my first visit to Edgar Street which were Wales 1-1 Northern Ireland at the Cardiff City Stadium
which was followed by Bristol Rovers 3-0 Cambridge United at the Memorial Ground. Both of which had been really enjoyable but unfortunately were both revisits, still fun though. It was my 5th League game watching Bristol Rovers this season and they have now won each… Should I be there more often? It was also good meeting a few old faces again!
I’d been planning my visit to Edgar Street since the start of the season. Hereford are one of those clubs that if you know British football you know who they are. Until 2014 Hereford United Football Club were in existence and were a standard Football League club plying their trade in League One and Two respectively during their later years. Following relegation to the Conference at the end of the 11-12 season, in which they played in the division for 2 seasons before being expelled to the Southern Premier League because of the financial issues at the club. This then lead to expulsion as a club following a winding up order with debts estimated to be £1.3 million. December 2014 was a dark time for football as Hereford United were no more. The team who were as high as League One in 2008/09
were finished. What happens now to the ground? The players? The fans? The employees? A phoenix club named Hereford Football Club. The negotiations between the Hereford United Supporters Club (HUST) and a local businessman Jon Hale lead to the registration of Hereford Football Club with the Hertfordshire County Football Association and the club was born.
Wind forward a few months to the 8th of August 2015. Their first League match was a 4-1 win over Dunkirk in the Midland Premier League, the 9th tier of English football. This game took place in front of 4,062 fans. A new League record. Also higher than a number of Football League attendances. Right now, they lie in 2nd place in the Division, 5 points behind the leaders Alvechurch but with 2 games in hand and an approaching top two clash between the two sides next weekend.
In the meantime however it’s a home fixture at Edgar Street against Bardon Hill. 2nd against the team 18 places behind them in the table. My journey to Hereford is approx 70 miles from Bristol so wasn’t a difficult journey – I had wanted to get the train but as per usual, it was too expensive. After the drive and arriving at the ground at about 1PM it was plenty of time to hit the local Wetherspoons, The Kings Fee. It gave me the an opportunity to read my first copy of the Non-League Magazine which I found extremely insightful to a lot of Non-League clubs that I didn’t know a lot about.
Once I’d had a bite to eat it was time for the walk back in the pouring rain to Edgar Street for the game. My ticket was for the Meadow End which I was told (correctly I might add) that this was the best place to go. It really is a beautiful, old ground. This unfortunately is one of the causes of the opposite end being closed to the public so is used as a place to show off old flags. I guess this maintains the personality involved in that part of the ground. The terrace I was in was brilliant but strange at the same time because it is on a curve.
As the game was approaching the terraces were filling up and the attendance looked like it would be a healthy one again. For a club in the 9th tier of football their attendances have been scarily impressive which just goes to show that the Football League isn’t the only thing which lures in fans. These fans had another entertaining game to look forward to. Hereford had already scored a massive 91 goals in the league whilst conceding just 26. The game was brought into life less than 2 minutes after kicking off. Mustapha Bundu put Hereford 1-0 up with a neat flick at the near post. 20 minutes later and it was 2-0. Bundu involved again as his assist allowed Robert Purdie to smash a drive into the top corner. This score remained as the half time whistle blew. This was to the relief of most of the fans who were soaked through by this stage.
The second half, as expected, was even more one-way traffic with the home side attacking their fans in the Meadow End. A further 5 goals were put in, 3 of which for the unstoppable Mustapha Bondu to the delight of the entire stadium and encouraged the chants of “Mustapha Bondu, Sierra Leone!”. I must say, 2 of his 4 on the day were absolute screamers whilst his final goal was completely down to the beautiful assist by John Mills who was awarded the Man of the Match award. All that was missing from his performance was a goal. One of the more favourable goals amongst the fans was the 7th. A far post header by the striker Michael Symons, the “beast”. He seemed to me like the Jon Parkin of the squad. Nevertheless he scored and that was the main thing!
I did really enjoy Edgar Street, it is certainly a place that any football fan should visit. One thing I will point out though is try to avoid driving… the traffic in Hereford is bloody horrendous! I don’t know whether it was Bank Holiday traffic but my god it wasn’t fun. I do look forward to, one day, seeing Hereford back in the big time of the Football League again! Good luck for the rest of this season & the future! Also, see you all at Wembley for the FA Finals Day in May!
What Were The Statistics?
Hereford 7-0 Bardon Hill
Attendance – 2840
Price of ticket – £7.00 (Young Adult)
Programme – £2.50
Car Parking – £5
Miles Travelled – 130
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