The Tale of Robert's Trousers

Firstly, let’s deal with the question I posed last time - what’s the only food that can’t be improved by adding cheese? The answer is of course - cheese.

Your question this time is - how far is it to London from Stockport Town Hall? 

Once upon a time, I was the Away Match Travel Organiser (AMTO) for the Hyde & District Branch of the Hatters Independent Supporters Club (HISC) & documented all of our adventures. I’ve been asked to regale some of these tales via this blog. Apologies if the following article makes no sense - I guess you had to be there? However, I hope it at least serves to remind as to how enjoyable following County is & may also take you back to happier times.

So, without further ado, let me attempt to delight you with the tale of Robert’s trousers.....  

‘Twas the opening day of the 96/97 season, August 17th away at Crewe, the first trip officially organised by AMTO.

7 members gathered at HQ (the White Lion) for pre-trip sustenance at 09:30. Only 3 were to return. We all bowed at our newly acquired framed picture of EP & set off.

On the way to Hyde station, we bumped into Robert (who was supposed to meet us earlier), a pair of recently collected dry-cleaned trousers in hand. Robert stated that he was on the way to HQ to change into said trousers, which had not witnessed an opening-day defeat for County in some 9 years.

“No you’re not” interjected our Chair, “we’ll miss the train”. Despite Robert’s protests, mainly based on why it was necessary to set off so early, he bowed to the inevitable & put his lucky trousers into his car.

Although the train was late, there was still time to indulge further refreshments at Piccadilly & procure some of the portable variety for the long trip to Crewe. The train was packed with County supporters & well policed.

Upon reaching Crewe, we headed for the Royal for further pre-match treats. Eric (El Presidente) popped in to advise that he was now employed by County as Mr. Jones gopher. His first scoop was that we’d just missed out to Burnley on signing Brett Angel (SCAN 945).

At the ground, I ate a cold pie, not my first at Crewe. Durkan (SCAN 1039) was replaced by Ware (SCAN 1020) with 15 minutes to go, leaving vast areas of the pitch on the right unsupervised, & County went on to lose an uneventful match 1-0 in the 89th minute.

Ever the optimists, comments from County supporters post match included “we can’t do it now”, “sack Jones” & “this always happens to us”. On the way back, we lost the Stalybridge members in Crewe, Robert at the Commercial & the boy Barry at the Beehive upon our return to Hyde.

Just 3 made it back to HQ, some 12 hours after setting off that morning.

If only we had forgone some early refreshments & allowed Robert to change into his lucky trousers that fateful morning, County would have been crowned as Champions that season.       

Let it be known that these views are my own, and do not necessarily reflect the collective views of Help the Hatters.


  1. Think Robert has forgotten to put his lucky trousers on very many times in the past few seasons!!


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