Wednesday 2 March 2016

6th Battalion and Football

Count Gleichen

Thursday 2nd March 1916: Lance Corporal Stanbridge, 6th Bedfordshire Regiment, late Captain of the Ampthill Football Club, has sent home a report of a semi-final played “Somewhere in France”. He says: “We have played the semi-final which, I am sorry to say, we lost 1-0. We played the 9th Leicesters, not far from the firing line. It was a very bustling game, witnessed by about 1,500 spectators, including the Divisional General(1) and officers. For the greater portion of the first half we were outplayed and their inside right scored the only goal of the match from four yards out, hitting the underneath of the cross-bar and then going through. Just before half-time, during a charge, our outside left had to leave the field for good. During this half we kicked up hill with the wind at our backs. In the second half we played our opponents practically to a standstill, but could do everything but score, our opponents for once not being able to shoot. I should like to say we were beaten but not disgraced, as the score readily suggests. Our team, which was at full strength with one exception, was as follows: Lance Corporal Stanbridge, goal; Private Smith and Sergeant Bilsborrow, backs; Privates Rance, Wiggs and Iremonger, halves; Lance Corporal Hunter, Private Hawkes, Private Chambers, Sergeant Abbott and Private Munro forwards”.

Source: Bedfordshire Times 14th April 1916

(1) Count Gleichen

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