Ladies' Team playing football in the late 1960s at Elsworth
The following article by Maureen Stevens (above, about to kick the
ball) was published in the January 1997 issue of the Elsworth Chronicle.
Memories of Elsworth Ladies'
Football Team and Sporting Days Gone By
past has gone and cannot be changed, and some people may feel that it
is not always wise to reflect about days gone by. Yet all of us at some
time reminisce about what has happened in the past. Those of us who
have lived in the same area for many years, particularly in rural
communities, will have seen many changes taking place around us. Change
is inevitable and we have to concede that there are many areas where
progress has improved the quality of life for some individuals. Even
so, one cannot help sometimes feeling rather sad about the diminishing
and often disappearing services and activities that have vanished from
our locality, together with much of the community comradeship that had
always appeared to exist.
Being a keen sports person myself, activities of a sporting nature have
always been of interest to me. I recall the very strong local support
that was given to Elsworth Sports Club during the 50's, 60's and 70's
and possibly early 80's. The village had football and cricket teams
that were a force to be reckoned with, and it was a simple task for the
various captains to muster 1st and 2nd teams, which consisted of mainly
During the sixties and seventies, Elsworth also had a very active
ladies' football team. Admittedly this started off as a bit of fun
during feast week activities (in those days there was a different
attraction each day throughout feast week), but as interest grew, and
skills improved, it became a regular team which travelled over a fairly
wide area to play matches. The original team was made up entirely of
Elsworth ladies. I remember very clearly our very first game which was
played in pouring rain, the players soaking wet and plastered in mud,
but nevertheless, greatly enjoyed by all who took part, providing a
great deal of laughter for those who had turned up to watch the event
from the sidelines.
To return to the present, sadly we have seen a decline in support and
today mustering teams at weekends causes headaches for captains as they
seek to muster teams from wherever they can find someone available or
willing to play. One wonders what will happen when the people behind
the scenes (who do all the leg work) eventually call it a day. Will
there be new blood to take on all the tasks? Perhaps, though, the
future will see some return of support as we now have a schoolboys'
football team and a table tennis club. There are also some stirrings
and interest in providing a tennis court or possibly a bowls green, but
of course this will depend on how much support local people are willing
to give. I would like to feel that that Elsworth is still a caring
community and that we might be able to improve the recreational
facilities within the village for young and old alike.
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Elsworth Chronicle 2017