Posted by Chris:
My dream tie for the second round of the FA Cup Leeds United v Harrogate Railway almost came off. Down to the last four balls in the pot and both teams still in the draw, I was sat on the edge of my seat when Leeds United or Hereford United came out. But alas, it was the monkey hangers instead of the Railway.
Harrogate Railway got a home draw against Mansfield Town. It is a real shame Leeds, who have yet to get past Hereford, just missed out playing them. It would have been a huge boost for the coffers of the Railway and a huge game locally.
The Railway play at Station View, Starbeck, where I grew up watching them play, with my dad in the late 1950's and early 1960's before I was old enough to go and watch the mighty Leeds. They had a corrugated iron shelter at the back of one of the goals, which I notice is still there. We used to bang on that like mad and shout "up the Railway." I bet they still do. They also had two old railway carriages that were used as the changing rooms.
One day one of the linesmen failed to turn up and my dad was asked to run the line. He got to go in at half time for a cup of tea and I had to wait outside.
My brother Stephen is the local historian and he writes a weekly 'Starbeck Nostalgia' column in the Harrogate Advertiser series. My mother sent me his recent piece on the history of the Railway. It ended with the hope for a dream tie in the next round at home to Leeds United. "Then we will see where my loyalties lie," he wrote. I know how he feels.