From the archives – WIE 37 (Part 1)

Despite, at times, it seeming like the days and weeks are merging into one at present we have remembered it’s time for our dive into the WIE archives in search of something semi-interesting to keep us, ahem, “entertained”. But first, we trust that you and your loved ones are all keeping safe and well.

WIE 37 coverThis week we jump forward 15 years and 17 issues to WIE 37, which covered January/February 2012. Let’s start with the, frankly, rather disappointing front cover for which I take full responsibility. I have an inkling that this was pulled together in panic at the last minute with the copy deadline fast approaching and with yours truly suffering from a real lack of inspiration. And it was based on the likelihood of striker Andy Pugh leaving in the transfer window and Leyton Orient being one of the clubs rumoured to be interested. But, in the end, you’ll remember that the club took what appeared to be the first offer on the table and Pugh departed up the M11 for the bright lights of Cambridge and a regular place on the substitutes bench at the Abbey Stadium.

WIE 37 was a 24-page issue, which only had six contributors (there’s definitely a bit of a theme here). My editorial questioned the pricing policy of the club following their decision to charge full admission prices (£12 for adults) for the FA Trophy replay against Thamesmead Town at PVR. My main point was there was little – let me rephrase that – there was no imagination from the club with admission charges when it came to home cup games and friendlies with the default setting being full price, which ultimately meant lower attendance figures. But of greater importance was our recognition of the recent news that our former central defender had passed away.

First up in this issue’s articles was from Alex with a look at some dodgy kit designs, inspired by the visit of Dover to PVR and some of their concerning strips over the years. Sutton United’s delightful chocolate and yellow combination came in for a special mention. Next was a contribution from a reader rather than a regular, which we are always delighted to receive. On this occasion Ulsterwings shared with us his personal history of supporting the Wings and his experience of following the club on overseas postings with the Army.

Under the title “The Fields of Peckham Rye” Russ shared with us his experience of watching Gaelic Football’s All-Ireland Championships. The connection to Peckham being that part of London’s connection with a few of the game’s historic greats. White Socks was next up with his account of the weekend trip to Truro for our league game down in Cornwall. The weekend comprised mainly of booze, kebab and curry houses and a little bit of football (a pleasing 3-2 win).

The centrespread was a feature on an exhibition by Leo Fitzmaurice called “Post Match” in which the artist had cleverly and imaginatively created football shirts from flattened cigarette packets and cartons. And very good they were too. Much better than the hideous ‘Jokerman’ font that I chose to use for the article; God knows what I was thinking. Safe to say that any future issues of WIE will use one, simple font throughout.

Next, and our separate offering for you this week, was Tim’s article titled “It was better back then” in which he reminisced on his 30 or so years watching football at PVR. As, is now usual, we’ll bring you that tomorrow.

An uncredited article is next titled “Memorable Away Days” and includes the FA Trophy win at Blyth Spartans in 2006, the 1-0 win at eventual champions AFC Wimbledon in 2009 and the 5-0 win at Woking in 2010. If only we’d saved one or two of those goals for our last visit to Kingfield…

Alex was next up with his account of his trip to Lille in which he took in the hometown club’s game against Sedan. Lille included Ashley Cole in their line-up, which didn’t dampen Alex’s enjoyment of the trip too much.

The issue drew to a close with Russ’ review of taking in the production of ‘Fit and Proper People’ at the Soho Theatre. Unfortunately, Russ didn’t have a great time as he found the play, about the takeover of a football club, had too many clichés and stereotypes. Funny that. But at least this issue of WIE was riding high in the culture stakes.

Tim, who was at the time based in Japan, provided the latest instalment of mangled English from FC Tokyo’s match programme. Examples such as “I told each player to cope with the opponent composedly with concentration”, and “Though we suffered two successive defeats, we get cheering up for the next match” make us think they were using the same translation algorithm used by Instagram.

The issue rounded off with a Caption Competition. Amazingly, in what was probably a first for the fanzine, we actually had some entries. Perhaps we’ll do some more in future.

Take care everyone and see you next time.

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