Tuesday 30 August 2016

Pershore Town - King George V Stadium

Pershore Town FC
King George V Stadium
King Georges Way
WR10 1QU

01386 556902

Ground Number: 611
Monday 29th August 2016
Pershore Town 0-2 Racing Club Warwick
Midland League D1


PERSHORE TOWN were formed in 1988, following the merger of 3 local clubs. They've been in the Midland League or its predecessors for their entire history with their best placing being 14th in the Midland Alliance in the 1995/96 season which at the time was step 4 of the the non-league pyramid. In current terms, they sit at step 6 of the pyramid with their best finish in recent times being 8th place in the Midland Combination Premier in the 2007/08 season. Generally though they have struggled, and have not recorded a top half finish since.

The club had an incredible run to the FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round in 1993/94. After beating Racing Club Warwick, Northampton Spencer, Racing Club Warwick & Atherstone United, they were drawn against Yeading, a few divisions higher than them, They lost 3-1 and missed out on a lucrative tie against football league side Gillingham. The club has not entered regularly into the FA Cup since them but have taken part in the FA Vase. Sadly for them, it's been a while since they had  a good run, with their best effort being the 1995/96 season which saw a 3-1 third round defeat to Burgess Hill Town.


Originally on this day I'd fancied going to North Ferriby v Barrow, but my manager totally ignored my request for the day off, even though I am entitled to it according to my contract. So I looked for something nearer to do with fellow groundhopper Chris, hoping that work would allow me to get out nice and early. I still planned for the worst case scenario though - looking for anything that was within 2 hours in case I had to stay until 12. I only decided that I was going to go to this game the day before, as I was looking for something to double up with the evening kick off at Nuneaton Griff.  Chris had supplied me with a list of 75 possibilities and after I'd checked which ones had decent pubs, I got back to him with the 7 that looked the best. He picked Pershore Town v Racing Club Warwick, and I was happy with that as it looked a nice town and it was a ground that I'd fancied doing for a while.

One the day of the game, work was a breeze and I was out after 3 hours at 8am. Quite why the boss insisted on hauling me in, only he knows, but I wasn't hanging about. I let Chris know as soon as possible and arrangments were made for an earlier meet in Leighton Buzzard where he was picking up some records. I was glad to have some time to kill, so I went home and had a bath, before getting some fresh clothes. For some reason, I had it in my head that we were off to Bromyard, but a recheck of the fixtures soon had me heading to the correct place. I left home just before 10.10, planning to park up in Morrisons and meet Chris in the town.

I got to my destination at 10.55, going in Morrisons and getting some cans of Irn-Bru before meeting Chris at 11.10. We were soon on our way, and after 15 minutes delay due to bank holiday traffic, we were in the town at 1.20. The club were charging £3 to park, so I just dumped the car in a nearby side street and went into town. The place was packed, strangely not for the football but a plum festival. In fact they seemed a little too obsessed with plums with everything in a plum colour and mentions of it everywhere. We went to a pub called (naturally) The Pickled Plum for lunch, and we both had a burger and a pint of proper cider. It may have been pricey, but it was top notch stuff and was a very nice town. The welcome at the club was a tad underwhelming - quite insular and it felt like we were interrupting their private party. They'd also sold out of programmes (we didn't do many said the gateman) and more interested in selling parking than entry to the football. It was a real shame as the ground was nice too, but unlike other hoppers, I didn't go in search of another game when the programme had sold out. Others have done that, travelling as far as  a 400 mile round trip to Maltby Main before turning on their heel and going back south without seeing a game.

Given the home town's links with plums, it was most amusing to see visitors Racing Club Warwick line up in a purple plum coloured kit. The first half was limited in terms of chances but the visiting keeper pulled off a couple of decent saves to keep his team in the mix. Finally. the scoring was opened on 62 minutes when Racing Club Warwick took the lead from close range. Pershore rallied a bit but they were all aimless,  just like my own team Wycombe. The visitors rode their luck and grabbed a second 10 minutes from time when their number 10 completed a decent run by firing home from just inside the area. The game then faded to a conclusion with the away side strolling to a win despite being second best for a lot of the game.


KING GEORGE V STADIUM is a pretty decent venue, or at least main stand for step 6. What a shame then that it's not really looked after, with overgrown stinging nettles all around the ground and bits that feel like they've been abandoned. There was a feeling of having given up round the place, and perhaps that was reflected in recent league finishes.

There was one bright spot - the tea bar looked to be serving some decent grub at a nice price, though I didn't sample any. The town is very nice, well kept and buzzing place, albeit with a slight obsession with plums. In particular, the Pickled Plum is an absolute belter drinks wise and has amazing food too should you be happy to pay £11 for a burger. Back at the ground, there's a reasonable bar with the usual range of drinks on offer.

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