Tuesday 2 May 2023

Old Parmiterians - Thomas Parmiter Sports Centre

Old Parimiterians FC
The Thomas Parmiter Sports Centre 
High Elms Lane 
WD25 0JU

01923 682805 (Sports Centre)

Ground Number: 1179
Tuesday 2nd May 2023
Old Parmiterians 2-3 Waltham Cross
Herts Senior County League D1


The club has a slightly confusing history with the more well-known Old Parmiterians being based in Walthamstow and playing in the Amateur Football Combination and the Southern Amateur Combination going back to 1898. The Hertfordshire branch of the club joined the Herts Senior County League in 1998, starting out in Division 1. Two years later, they earned promotion to the Premier Division after finishing as runners-up behind London Lions. They only lasted one season at the higher level before being relegated but would win promotion again in 2002, this time a 3rd place finish behind Hadley and Bushey Rangers. This time their stay in the Premier Division would be three seasons, just avoiding relegation in the first two with 14th the club's best-ever placing. Old Parmiterians would remain in Division 1 until 2015 when another runners-up spot behind Buntingford Town. Towards the end of 2015/16, the team resigned from the league and their record was expunged and for the next couple of seasons, they played in the Reserve and Development Division 1. They rejoined Division 1 proper in 2018 and remain there to this day, finishing around the lower reaches of the table.


This game was decided upon on Thursday. With me wanting to keep things local, the Hertfordshire Senior County League seemed a fairly obvious place to start. There were a few choices for me to visit but I settled upon Old Parmiterians v Waltham Cross as it was a decent ground and one of the closest options. It also helped that Waltham Cross tweeted fairly regularly as this league has let me down with cancellations in the past. It was nice to see the visitors look forward to the game on their Twitter on Saturday evening. It was also a decent pre-match, the usual walk with Colin listening to music and a couple of pints in the pub.

The less said about the rest of Saturday, the better. For the second time in a week, Wycombe put in a dismal performance on the pitch. This was even worse than last week as we crashed 3-0 to Cheltenham Town. We didn't even test the opposition keeper for the second week in a row and the players were booed off the pitch at both half-time and full-time. We have also not won on a Saturday since February, a run that will extend to six months with our next Saturday game in August. For my part, I've not been enjoying going for a couple of months now and I don't think I will be getting a season ticket next season. This season's turned out to be a false economy after a pushed back my trip to Belgium to March after we had a home game scheduled. However, I then reverted to the initial date after the Queen pegged it and all the football was cancelled. It cost me around £200 extra for the late change of plan. That said, the season ticket does work out to be decent value. Or to be more accurate, the matchday prices are scandalous, with the matchday tickets being priced as high as £31 in some areas. I've asked many times about a 12 or 15-game package, but have not even had the courtesy of a response. The whole point of not committing is that I have to decide my holiday well in advance at work so I can't work around home games.

I had a fair few drinks to drown my sorrows on Saturday evening, following my being fairly sensible the previous two weeks. All in all, a very unhealthy day and I was expecting a brutal Sunday. As it turned out, it was not too bad with me in the warehouse at work, away from the crowds. The thought of not going to a Wycombe match for months and possibly not getting a season ticket felt like a release from a prison sentence, so I was in a much better frame of mind. Fellow hopper Colin had a typically calamitous Sunday after he'd intended to go to the playoff game at Walton and Hersham. However, he overslept, rushed out without his phone that had his ticket on and only realised when he woke up from yet another sleep, way past where he needed to get off. Monday was similar, though I did have to spend a bit of time in the shop. I was in a decent mood still though as all the dates that I wanted for time off from work were confirmed and I was told next week's Bank Holiday was optional working.
Monday night as usual was the only night I get a decent night's sleep. so I woke up feeling pretty refreshed on Tuesday morning. It was the usual breakfast, bath & getting dressed before heading down Wycombe just before 10. Lidl was my supermarket of choice and I got a few things including a hot dog stuffed crust pizza for lunch. This was as good as I remember it, but not exactly healthy. That and the also excellent chocolate brownie that I had more than damaged any good work that my ten-mile walk had done. The afternoon was spent at home. Given that the league were not the quickest in updating their FA Full Time site, or indeed having the correct information, I had a backup in place. This was Belstone, a revisit, I last went on FA Cup Final day in 2014. Since then, I've certainly expanded my groundhopping horizons, something which I will go into further on a later blog. After dinner, I left at 5.25, meeting Colin at 5.40. It was less than half an hour journey but my sleepy friend still had a snooze on the way. We arrived at 6.05, just as Martin, who had driven over from Berkhamsted arrived.
Old Parmiterians had not played much in recent times with just two games in the last two months. These were a 0-0 draw at Evergreen on 22nd April and a 3-1 at Welwyn Garden City Development on 8th April. March saw them suffer a case of Lemsford-phobia as their game both home and away were awarded to their opponents as they had presumably been unable to fulfil. They were 10th with 23 points whilst visitors Waltham Cross were 8th with 36 points. The visitors were in good form having won 4-2 at Apsley Argyle on Saturday. They'd also beaten L7 3-1, Hertford Heath Development 4-0 and Evergreen 4-1. They'd also drawn 2-2 at London Lions Development but lost 3-1 to Bovingdon Reserves. The clubs had not played each other yet this season, they meet again on 20th May, 18 miles away at Cheshunt FC. Old Parmiterians looked the neater side and they took the lead after ten minutes. A good through ball found their striker who slotted past the keeper. Waltham Cross had a golden chance to equalise on 18 minutes but #9 scuffed the ball wide from around ten yards out. They had another chance blocked but their equaliser was special. On 27 minutes, a shot was curled home from a very tight angle wide on the left by Nickal David Luzolo. The visitors started to dominate and Luzolo poked home a second after very sloppy defending on 38 minutes. It was 3-1 on 42 minutes, the keeper came flying out and clattered the striker for which he was booked. The resulting penalty was converted successfully. Another penalty was awarded around the hour mark, this time awarded to Old Parmiterians after a trip on the edge of the area. This too was converted to make it 3-2. Waltham Cross has a couple of chances to seal the game and looked the most likely to score. They also had an effort ruled out for offside a few minutes from time.
A draw would not have been unjust, but Waltham Cross were the better side and deserved their win. There was an attendance of 18 at the game. By the end of the game, it was quite nippy, though that was more due to the open nature of the ground and the wind more than anything. The game finished around 8.20, after which I nipped into the toilet at the nearby leisure centre. From there, it was time to head home, via the Tesco in Chalfont so Colin could get some dinner and also some petrol money for me. After dropping him off, I headed home, getting in at 9.10. I finished off my blog and sorted out pictures but was in no rush to get to bed.

The THOMAS PARMITER SPORTS CENTRE is a decent venue for the Herts Senior County League. The pitch is almost fully railed and has a bit of hard standing, though mainly grass. There's no cover, but there is a couple of dugouts. Parking wise, there's plenty and the adjacent centre provides toilet facilities and a vending machine. The ground has good road links but there is not much nearby, the nearest facilities are in Leavesden, around a mile away.

No comments:

Post a Comment