The idea for regularly posting memories of Watford F.C came from the video above that was first shown at half time during the BBC’s live coverage of Q.P.R v Watford on 10th December 2010. I’ve never felt nostalgia hit me in such a way as it did when I saw that three minute montage. I wanted to create something similar that would bring back memories of supporting the Hornets for all Watford supporters.
Using my fairly large collection of programmes and memorabilia I started Old Watford in 2015 as a Twitter feed of scans of my collection which were posted on the anniversary of the date a game was played. It grew to include video clips, web and newspaper reports and anything I could find that related to matches that Watford had played.
I started to realise that just posting on Twitter was a bit of a waste and that putting the content on a website would create an archive for anyone with an interest in Watford Football Club to use. So this is that website. I’ve tried to retain the idea of having the content shown on its anniversary. This should usually be the first ‘featured’ post you see. After that the posts go in date order starting with the most recent.
There are several menus and most of the content within them is created by tagging posts with relevant categories. Those featuring dates, opponents and topics are hopefully obvious and easy to use.
The menus featuring players, managers and other notable people mainly relate to features in the programme. A manager is always tagged in any programme where he has written notes, however surprisingly for several years in the 60s and 70s this wasn’t a common occurrence. Similarly when the chairman or chief executive have a column they will be tagged. Players are tagged when they have done an in depth interview or feature in the programme.
I’ll always use the proper name for all things pre-Premier era (as in no way should this ever be considered when football started or used as an excuse to ignore what went before). So Division One is obviously the top division, Division Two the second, Division Three the third (for many years this was regionalised and Watford only ever played in the South) and Division Four was the bottom division of the Football League.
From 1992/93, when the Premier League was formed and took all the old Division One clubs off to become rich, Divisions One, Two and Three are pre-fixed with the word ‘new’ just to differentiate them from what came before. So New Division One is the second division and New Division Two the third.
From 2004-05 the Football League changed the names of its divisions so from then on you’ll see reference to the Championship which is really the second division. Below this is League One and League Two but as Watford haven’t been in either since they adopted these names we’ll not worry about them now.
I imagine you know all of this stuff anyway and if not, I’ve probably just made you even more confused. Blame it on Sky. There were plenty of things wrong with football before 1992 but the names and numbering of the Football League Divisions wasn’t one of them.
The name of our opponents will be shown in the post as the name they played under at the time, but they will be tagged under the name they are known as now.
For example the post of the game on the 25th December 1954 (yes we used to play on Christmas Day) where we faced Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic is shown as such but is tagged as AFC Bournemouth, who they became in 1972.
When listing games against Wimbledon in both posts and tags I have used either Wimbledon or AFC Wimbledon for clarity depending on which name they played under at the time but the AFC side should be considered as a continuation of the original Wimbledon side that was founded in 1889. I have resisted the strong temptation to call the franchised side that was allowed to move 60 miles away from Wimbledon in 2002 and take the players and position of the original club as such and so in both posts and tags you will find them under the name they adopted in 2004.