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Dumbarton Football Stadium

I’ve been aware for a long time that though I have a category for Scottish Football Grounds in which I post pictures of those theatres of disappointment I’ve never actually featured what Sons fans know as The Rock.

Given that this season promises to be one of the most dismal in over twenty years for said fans what better sight to lighten the mood?

The stadium has had several sponsored names over its years since the club moved from the traditional Boghead: Strathclyde Homes Stadium, the Bet Butler Stadium, the Cheaper Insurance Direct Stadium,* the YOUR Radio 103FM Stadium, and now the C&G Systems Stadium reverting to Dumbarton Football Stadium in times between sponsorships.

It really is in a fantastic location.

Dumbarton Rock and Dumbarton Football Stadium from Castle Road:-

Dumbarton Rock and Dumbarton Football Stadium from Castle Road

From car park and pedestrian access. The turnstiles here are for the home end:-

Dumbarton Football Stadium from Car Park and Pedestrain Access.

Stadium, Stand and Dumbarton Rock from main car park:-

Dumbarton Football Stadium and Dumbarton Rock

Stadium and Dumbarton rock from western part of car park:-

Dumbarton Rock and Dumbarton Football Stadium

Showing Stand seating:-

Dumbarton Football Stadium Stand Seating

Stand from River Leven side:-

Dumbarton Football Stadium Stand

Stand from west car park:-

Dumbarton Football Stadium Stand from Car Park

Main Entrance from car park entrance:-

Dumbarton Football Stadium Main Entrance from Car Park Entrance

From Home support end of Stand. Kilpatrick Hills (known locally as the Long Crags) in right background:-

Dumbarton Football Stadium, From Home End of Stand

Pitch panorama. Dumbarton town in background. The large red brick building, once part of Ballantine’s Distillery, has now been demolished:-

Pitch Panorama, Dumbarton Football Stadium

Away end of pitch:-

"Away" End of Pitch, Dumbarton Football Stadium

I caught this disniterested spectator before a game once:-

Disinterested Spectator, Dumbarton Football Stadium

*When that one was first referred to by a BBC Radio Scotland reporter at a game I remember the programme’s presenter Richard Gordon wailing, “Noooo.” It was bit of a minter.

Paul Darrow

I was sad to see that Paul Darrow has died.

As Avon in the BBC TV SF series Blake’s 7 he provided the grit in the oyster which turned it into a pearl. (There wasn’t much TV SF about in those days in the UK – Doctor Who apart – so we were grateful for what we could get.)

There’s a hint of Davros in some of Darrow’s delivery of his lines in this compilation of Avon’s put-downs.

Paul Valentine Birkby (Paul Darrow): 2/5/1941 – 3/6/2019. So it goes.

Age Shall Not Weary Them

As an addendum to yesterday’s busy day we watched the film They Shall Not Grow Old shown on BBC2 last night.

The colourisation of the archive black and white footage brought an immediacy to some familiar images, a more visceral appreciation of the conditions the war was fought under, a greater humanisation of its participants; bringing it home that they were exactly like us, even at a distance of one hundred years.

I only wish though, that the film’s title did not embody a misquotation of Laurence Binyon’s poem For the Fallen.

He of course did not write, “They shall not grow old as we that are left grow old,” but rather “they shall grow not old,” a more poetic rendering but also one that implies a different sort of growth, that the remembering would increase as time passed.

(I note in passing that the Lord Lieutenant of Fife made the same misquotation at Fife’s one hundredth anniversary of the Armistice Remembrance Service in Dunfermline Abbey on Friday 9th.)

Binyon’s poem is also almost always misquoted in its next line as “nor the years condemn.” He in fact wrote, “nor the years contemn,” a stronger meaning – and one borne out by the commemorations occurring during the last four years.

Something Changed 13: The Life of Riley

Another decade ticked over and The Lightning Seeds got even better.

I remember this song as being the musical background to a montage of football clips on the BBC’s Saturday lunchtime Football Focus when it was a part of Grandstand (remember that?) but I may be confusing it with Bruce Hornby (and the Range)’s The Way It Is as Wiki has The Life of Riley as the theme set behind Match of the Day’s Goal of the Month.

Whatever, it’s another piece of joyful pop.

The Lightning Seeds: The Life of Riley

An Honorary Son? (and Daughter)

I see some overprivileged bloke who got married today has been granted the somewhat unlikely title of Earl of Dumbarton, which means his wife will be Countess of Dumbarton.

My first reaction on hearing this was that the local earldom was surely that of Lennox; but it seems they are still going, only elevated to Dukes, so that title wasn’t vacant.

A quick piece of Googling showed that there have in the past been two Earls of Dumbarton (see upper link above) but the last of them died in 1749 so making the title available.

I wonder what the new Earl and Countess will make of the place should they ever deign to visit.

And does his title make the new Baron Kilkeel (not to mention Duke of Sussex) an honorary Son of the Rock? Or his wife, Lady Kilkeel (and Duchess of Sussex,) an honorary daughter thereof?

I look forward to them turning up at the Rock for a game, but I shan’t hold my breath.

Pedant’s corner:- On the (utterly sycophantic) BBC television coverage of said nuptials I heard Huw Edwards refer to “Lord Lieutenants”. Tut, tut, Mr Edwards. Standards at the BBC used to be so much higher. Lieutenant here is an adjective descriptive of the Lord concerned. The plural you were so vainly seeking is “Lords Lieutenant”.

Last Game

Well, after this we’ll know Sons’ fate for next season.

Play-Off Final poster

Will my nerves be able to stand another 90 (or 120) minutes or, heaven forfend, penalties?

You can again catch it on BBC Alba. Kick-off is at 4.10 pm.

Here We Go Again

Sons are off to the Recs* tonight for the SPFL Tier 2 Play-off Final, First Leg, against Alloa Athletic.

More torture to endure. You can catch it yourself on BBC Alba.

Kick-off is 7.45 pm.

*Recreation Park as was, now called the Indodrill Stadium.

Outbreak of Sycophancy

I see some USian actress has got herself engaged to a bloke who lives in a big house in London.

I don’t really see the need for it to take up over half of the Six O’Clock BBC News bulletin, though, nor the obsequious interview, nor the programme at 19.30 punting Panorama to 22.45.

On a less sour note, check out our Dimitris’s* goal from Saturday.

What a belter.

*I suppose I’ll need to go along with everybody else’s “Froxy” from now on.

Poppy Watch 2017

It was one month and one day before Armistice Day this year (ie on October 10th) when I saw my first paper poppies beside a shop’s till. If you were to wear them for all that time they would have surely have deteriorated beyond use.

On Friday 20th Oct I saw one in the wild (as it were.) A young girl at the entrance to Kirkcaldy Library had just “dropped her flower.” She didn’t seem to know what it represented.

At least the politicians haven’t – quite – got round to it yet. Unless I’ve missed them.

My first sighting on TV this year was on Saturday night (21st Oct) and it was sported by an Italian! That is just bizarre. OK they were our allies in the Great War but in (most of) World War 2 we were enemies – even if their soldiers’ hearts weren’t really in it. (The Italian in question was Chelsea’s manager Antonio Conte. This just goes to show the unpleasant overtones of coercion associated with poppy wearing by public figures these days.)

Tonight came the first “normal” TV appearance – on the BBC’s Countryfile. Three weeks before Remembrance Day. And how long before it was the piece filmed?

I will make my contribution to the Earl Haig Fund as usual this year but reserve my right not to wear the poppy. I’ll say it again. The servicemen it commemorates died for my right not to be forced to wear one.

Live It Up 38: Chocolate Girl

This could be considered a 1980s answer in reverse to Carpet Man (see last week.)

I remember seeing the band perform this on the daily lunchtime BBC Scotland TV programme broadcast from the Glasgow Garden Festival.

Looking at this video messrs Ricky Ross and Dougie Vipond seem impossibly young. (I have taught Vipond’s eldest son.) And what was Lorraine McIntosh thinking about with that outfit?

Deacon Blue: Chocolate Girl

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