By Trevor Fisher
With a climate of uncertainty at Villa Park forecast this summer for Aston Villa supporters, the current World Cup in Brazil makes for a welcome distraction. But after the winners are crowned in Rio come July, our focus will be back on Villa’s plight. While the club goes through its ownership transition, there is an important landmark that supporters most make sure doesn’t get overlooked…
Next season will see the 140th anniversary of Aston Villa Football Club.
Isn’t it time we had a birthday party? We’ve never really had one before, but the 140th anniversary is a decent place to start.
The older history books always referred to the date of the club’s formation being in the March of 1874, but that was chiefly down to an article in the Sunday Mercury in 1924 by one of the first players. It’s been dismissed as misinformation since, with Rob Bishop and Frank Holt in the latest edition of ‘Aston Villa: The Complete Record’ dating the probable date for the club’s birth as November 21st 1874, which my researchers back up.
The Aston Villa Wesleyan Chapel cricket team members were looking for something to do after the cricket season – rugby or football? So the infamous first meeting under a lamppost at the top of Heathfield Road to decide is much more likely to have happened in the autumn. They decided to form a football team from the Villa cross chapel and the rest is a very rich history.
Isn’t it time we held a birthday party to honour this special moment in time, that began it all and subsequently affected all our lives? It’s less than six months to the date, but that is long enough to plan.
This year the 21st of November falls on a Friday, so the 22nd November would be the closest match date. Next week, the 2014/15 Premier League fixtures will be announced, so keep an eye out for November 22nd.
Update – Good news, the fixture on November 22nd will be a home tie against Southampton.
There are many potential ways of acknowledging the date and celebrating Villa’s great history. I can see a parade of stars from the past as a possibility on match day. Maybe a compilation video of clips from films of the great moments from the past? A new stature marking a time in Villa history to be unveiled? Obviously, there should be a party on the Holte.
There would also be an opportunity to raise money for Acorns and other local charities as we all celebrate villa’s great history.
It will need support from the fans. I have approached the club and they are mulling it over, so fan support would be important to expanding the scope of this celebration. If there is enough interest, then a plan can be drawn up. It could be a good way to welcome a new owner, assuming we have one by then.Please let us know what you think in the comments section below and if you have any ideas to how the anniversary should be marked. UTV
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