No.19 - Sat 22nd November 2014; Norfolk Primary Cup Round 4; 1.30pm at Snettisham Playing Field; Old Church Road; Snettisham; Hunstanton; Norfolk; PE31 7LX
Matchday images (48) https://picasaweb.google.com/footballgroundsinfocus/SnettishamMaroonsFC
Snettisham Maroons (1) 2 Narborough (4) 6
'Like many travellers I just love taking in county cup games where sides from different leagues are paired against each other. Today Iím heading towards the seaside town of Hunstanton where neighbouring North West Norfolk League side Snettisham Maroons Football Club is entertaining Narborough from the Central and South Norfolk League in a mouth-watering Norfolk Primary Cup Fourth Round tie.
After parking the car inside the ground thereís just enough time to partake in a tasty but expensive pre-match fish, chips and mushy peas purchased from the Snettisham Fish bar (about five minutes walk away) whilst watching the local lycra-clad cyclists depart from the neighbouring village hall in the later stages of a long distance Norfolk Sportive. My new found interest in road bikes and associated paraphernalia almost gets the better of me as I fail to notice the time and race hot footed pitch-side with seconds to spare before the (earlier than normal 1.30pm) kick-off. Phew!
Visitors to the Old Church Road ground are in for a real treat as the setting here is quite special. The large imposing 14th century St Mary's church (with its 172 foot high spire) situated on a steep incline provides a stunning backdrop to proceedings. Even on a dull day such as this the magnificent landmark makes for a terrific FGIF 'Soccerscape' and one not to be missed by any collector of football grounds. Take my word for it youíll just love it!
As the site is set at the foot of a hill it has in the past suffered from problems with water-logging. Last season the Maroons had to relocate to play its home games at the CITB (Construction & Industry Training Board) College in Bircham Newton (near Kings Lynn). Following much remedial work at a cost of £16000, a new drainage system is in now in place and has allowed the side to make a welcome return for the start of the 2014-15 season.
The ground which shares with the local cricket club is sandwiched in between a couple of roads (one running on each side of the playing area) which lead up towards the church. To the left a lovely heavy stone stone wall runs by the side of the pitch to give it an enclosed feel. From here a raised grassy embankment offers spectators a superb view of proceedings along the entire length of its course. Players and officials change in a shallow changing pavilion found just inside the main entrance and adjacent small car park. Without any cover or dug outs the ground is best described as one with open grass standing!
Before play I find out that the hosts have made an impressive unbeaten start to their campaign having won six and drawn two of their opening league matches whilst opponents Narborough sit mid table in Division Two of the C&SNFL losing only two of their games. In the previous round of the Primary Cup both sides had won home ties: Maroons had beaten Sporle (by coincidence also in the C&SNFL) 1-0 and the visitors overcame Ingoldisthorpe Reserves 4-3.
The visitors prove too strong and soon take control of the match racing into a comfortable 4-1 half-time lead. Despite a spirited fight back the Maroons cannot reduce the deficit and by full-time lose by 6-2. Narborough now travel to North East Norfolk side Lyng FC in the quarter-final stage of the competition in a tie to be played early in the new year. The game played in mainly dull overcast conditions attracts just over thirty spectators many of whom have made the relatively short journey up from Swaffham. As expected neither programmes nor refreshments are made available.
I received a warm welcome by everyone associated with the club today. Special mention must go to affable club secretary Robby Kerr who not only gave me ground directions when I phoned before setting out but invited me to join the players in the Rose & Crown pub for a swift half after the game. A visit to Snettisham Maroons Football Club certainly comes highly recommended (especially the delightful setting). For more information and details about the club in particular and the NWNFL in general click on the links shown below. The joys of hopping continue...have fun wherever you go!'.
FGIF Match Stats
Scorers: (H) Peck (32), Kerr (70) and (A) Coe (3, 43, 60), Stangroom (24, 62), Borognoni (38)
Attendance: 34; Admission: Free; Programme: None; Match rating: 4/5; Ground rating: 4/5.
edited on 24/11/14