Friday 18 April 2014

Record Shop Advertisements in old Football Programmes

In appreciation of record shops of a gone world, I've delved into my collection of old football programmes to seek out those advertisements of record shops that shared the pages with breweries, garages, fish and chip shops, florists, plumbers, surveyors, car breakers, chimney cleaners, builders and coal merchants - to name just a few of the businesses that once forked out a few guineas to advertise in their local football club's official home programme.

The examples date from the 1950s to the early 1970s, when the football programme was still a slim publication, usually no more than 14 x 21 cms, and in many cases with hardly any photographs, printed on the cheap paper stock. This was still several decades before the ubiquitous and generic colour magazine format took over.

Today with a revival of interest in record shops, especially with annual events like Record Store Day, and superb websites like devoted to exploring the glorious past of the nation's record shops, it's time to dig out ephemera that can reveal more and more evidence of the giant story of our musical heritage.

Certainly there is a strong link between the era of the 3pm Saturday Kick-off and the soundtrack of the hits of the day being blasted out from the Tannoy systems in creaky football stadiums that have by and large disappeared along with the high street record shop that once stood a throw-in or two up the road...

Gillingham v QPR, May 18th 1966

Northampton Town v Preston North End, February 13th 1965

Middlesbrough v Cardiff City, November 20th 1965

Barrow v Northampton Town, November 4th 1967

Watford v Southampton, February 2nd, 1960

Crewe Alexandra v Stockport County, February 26th 1966

Huddersfield Town v Arsenal, January 16th 1971

Leicester City v Arsenal, March 6th 1971

Everton v Arsenal, October 3rd, 1959

Stoke City v Wolves, December 21st 1963

Bradford Park Avenue v Chesterfield, September 6th 1969

Yeovil Town v Arsenal, January 2nd 1971

Scunthorpe United v Lincoln City, March 25th 1961
Huddersfield Town v Arsenal, February 6th 1968

Lincoln City v Huddersfield Town, September 14th 1966
Gillingham v QPR, May 18th 1966

Fulham v Sheffield Wednesday, February 28th, 1968

Burnley v Brighton & Hove Albion, January 31st 1961

Peterborough Town v Swansea Town, February 20th, 1965

Colchester United v Arsenal, January 24th 1959

Crystal Palace v Southend United, January 21st 1950

Crystal Palace v Aldershot, February 6th 1954
Crystal Palace v Watford, April 23rd 1958 

Sheffield Wednesday v Arsenal, September 22nd 1956
Hartlepools United v Lincoln City, October 15th 1966

Fulham v Arsenal, December 5th 1964
Millwall v Bolton Wanderers August 26th 1968
Swindon Town v Leeds United, January 18th 1964
Ipswich Town v Liverpool, March 5th 1963
Coventry City v Southampton, August 22nd 1970

When I was a teenager, football programmes like these changed hands at pocket money prices.  Today supply outweighs demand for these items - and they can still be found for pennies rather than pounds. And within, a vivid window into the past awaits...

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