I am an exiled sexagenarian Bristolian who has lived in Stroud since the mid eighties. Aware of Forest Green Rovers well before then through franchised reports in the Bristol Evening Post, I had no idea where in Gloucestershire Rovers were located.
Interest peaked by the Stroud News & Journal’s reports, I saw my first few home matches about 36 years ago, but only when my own sporting commitments – football, hockey, cricket & dry-slope skiing – permitted. As my joints screamed for mercy and body parts seized up, adrenalin though sporting competition was traded for a gradual addiction to supporting Rovers, home & away. Later, I played sidekick to Bob Hunt in live BBC Radio Glos commentaries
In the late 80s, a cricket injury deprived me of the hearing in one ear, and gradually my deafness worsened. Nonetheless, I found that yelling support from the anonymity of The Old & New Lawn’s stands (where no one can hear what anyone else says anyway) meant a level playing field for my depleted senses. Eventually, severe & profound deafness led to early retirement in 2010. That left me more time for putting in volunteer work with the Club, the more so on Dale Vince’s arrival as initiatives like the Ambassador Scheme met increased support.
I’m proud to be the author of 2 books about FGR, ‘The Rise of Forest Green Rovers – The Road to Wembley’ (2015), and ‘We Did It Our Way – Forest Green Rovers’ Triumph at Wembley’ (2016). All the sales proceeds were paid to Gloucestershire’s excellent local deaf charity, GDA for whom I am past Chair, Trustee and now Friend.
Already in our mid 60s, 2 years ago my wife and I adopted vegan diets, proving you can teach old dogs and bitches new tricks!
Currently, I am delighted to be Members Secretary for FGR Supporters Club, amongst other things compiling its monthly newsletter.