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The PL League Boss⭐
Apr 28, 2006
PL Headquarters Hullbridge
Some time ago someone posted the link to pathe news which had newsreel of Southend v Bristol Rovers Cup match in 1952, I've now reached this point in my research so I thought you might like to read the story to go with the film. Hopefully the following link for pathe news works:


As soon as the draw was announced Bristol coach firms began booking large parties of supporters for the trip to Southend. British Railways are also arranging special train facilities and there is a possibility of the gate record being smashed. Bristol Rovers have one of the largest contingents of supporters travelling to away games, they requested 8,000 tickets but will get their official share of 700 only. United management have decided not to make the Bristol Rovers cup game all ticket match.
From the Southend Standard 17 Jan 1952

On Saturday the stand tickets for the cup-tie with Bristol Rovers go on sale at the Stadium. The sale will be in the hands of United Supporters’ Club officials. Business will commence at 1.15 p.m. when the turnstiles will open for the United Reserves-Brighton Reserves combination cup game. For the Bristol game it has been decided to open the gates at noon as five special trains from Bristol will arrive just before mid-day and Rovers are expected to bring at least 8,000 spectators. Agreement has yet to be reached on the colours the two clubs will play in. This will be left to the F.A. to settle. Bristol wanted to bring their own band but Southend’s musicians are quite capable of playing “Good-night Irene” the Rovers signature tune and not forgetting our own little ditty “All pull together”.
From the Southend Standard 24 Jan 1952.

Trouble started when supporters who had queued for several hours at the Stadium came away disappointed. Many of them besieged the offices of the club in an effort to tell the directors what they thought of the arrangements. Many who queued had no intention of seeing the Reserves match but paid for admission intending to leave as soon as they had obtained their tickets. They left their cars parked on the roadside only to find they had been reported for parking by the Police. A supporter from Beaumont Gardens states that when he lined up there were approximately 70 to 100 people in front of him. On passing through the turnstiles he was surprised to find nearly treble that number for season ticket holders (already in possession of one ticket) were passed through the turnstile and allowed to jump the queue. A Westbourne Grove man wrote “I entered the ground at 1.45 p.m. my entrance fee of 2s 3d was accepted without a word of explanation or hint that the tickets had nearly all gone.

The Directors and management wish to tender their apology for the unfortunate breakdown in arrangements made for the distribution of tickets last Saturday. Certain unexpected circumstances developed for which the organisers were unprepared, and these caused misunderstanding and confusion.
From the Southend v Bristol Rovers programme.

F.A.Cup Round 4
Saturday 2nd February 1952
Southend United 2-1 Bristol Rovers.

The Blues fought their way through to the fifth round of the F.A.Cup but the match was in no way a classic football match, in fact their had been far more football science in the Southampton cup-tie than in this match. The game was a fight to the finish and what a finish it was, with Jack French putting paid to Rovers hopes nine minutes from time. The Rovers fans were hushed. The strains of “Goodnight Irene” which was sung virtually non stop since they took the lead two minutes after the interval, died away and were not heard again. Bristol had been unfortunate to lose as United equalised while a player was injured and receiving attention on the side of the pitch. Both goals had narrow escapes but the first half remained goalless. Two minutes into the second half Rovers took the lead when Scannell came out to take the ball but he was beaten to the ball. After this Rovers were spurred onto greater efforts, but with a player short Loughran placed a drop shot into the goalmouth and Leslie Stubbs was on hand to head the equaliser in the 63rd minute. The excitement in the stand became intense, the Rovers player returned but was a passenger on the wing. Nine minutes from time Lawler lobbed the ball into the goalmouth and French burst through the defence and drove the ball into the net. Team: Scannell; Loughran and Anderson; French, Sheard and Lawler; Sibley, McAlinden, Wakefield, Grant and Stubbs.

Extract from Southend United the Boom Years 1946 to 1955 by Peter William Baker
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Fantastic stuff. So the Pirates have been singing Goodnight Irene for over 60 years? It's the first time I've heard of All Pull Together. Anyone got the words?
The crowd was in excess of 22,000 for this match, not bad for what in todays money would've been an all L1 affair

Also i note the late Les Stubbs scored, nothing odd about that but funny that this article should appear now having read of Les in the latest AAS
Fantastic stuff. So the Pirates have been singing Goodnight Irene for over 60 years? It's the first time I've heard of All Pull Together. Anyone got the words?

They sing the sanitised version of the song, popularised by the Weavers, with the lyric "I'll see you in my dreams." :thumbdown: And not the original Leadbelly version, "I'll get you in my dreams." :thumbsup: An argument I regularly have with a Pirates fan I know, who regularly sings the song as the closing number in his folk duo's set.
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Love our tackle after about 1 min 30 of the clip which takes their bloke out of the match in our penalty area and no one even appeals! Granty would have been carried away brown bread if that had happened to him