England played Germany in the World Cup Final at Wembley on Saturday 30th July 1966. Bobby Moore was presented with the Jules Rimet Trophy by HM Queen Elizabeth 2nd after the thrilling 4 v 2 victory.
Tickets for the tournament must have been easy to obtain for at least some of the matches as I was a spectator at the Mexico v Uruguay match that was played at Wembley on 19th July. I went along with my two brothers and a friend from Devon. It was a sunny day and the score ended 0 v 0 just as England v Uruguay had ended in the first game of the World Cup.
You may think that the population of Eton Wick and every other community in England would have been glued to their black and with TV for the final, but that was not the case.
John Coke took me and other members of the 1st Eton Wick & Boveney Scout Troop to South Wales for a week’s camp. All the tents and other camping gear was loaded on the back of one of Bob Bond’s Bedford lorries and driven to the Neath Valley by John Fennel. I personally have a distinct memory of going down the long hill on the A4 going into Marlborough in Wiltshire as the M4 had not opened the way to Bristol.
When we arrived at our destination we scouts discovered that the camp site was some distance from the road so all the equipment and supplies needed to be carried. This was done with the troop’s trek cart. Each patrol taking turns to race down the track with the cart fully loaded. Scary to recall with its potential dangers, but I certainly remember it was great fun at the time. My overriding memory of the week is of rain and there was plenty of it during the seven days we were in camp. This memory is equally shared with the brilliant week that we had.
Another group who were not in the village on World Cup Final day were members of the Youth Club who were in St Ives in Cornwall enjoying their annual camp. Frank Bond says that a neighbouring farmer invited to campers into his home to watch the match.
My brother Andrew told me that much to his annoyance he was taken by our mother, Betty Denham to the Royal Tournament at Earls Court on a trip organised in the village. My sister Amanda says as an 8 year old she found the event very loud and action packed too.
And yet another group of young people were on a trip to the Isle of Arran with Alan Paice, Priest in charge of St John’s the Baptist. My brother Michael was in this group who stayed in the Scottish National Trust hostel in the grounds of Brodick Castle. He remembers listening to the final on a radio as there were no TVs at the hostel.
|Ford Transit mini bus and hostel accomodation|
So one of the greatest day in the history of English Football found four village organisation taking young people and old out to participate in other events. Remarkable, do you think that the same would happen now?
If you were in St. Ives with the Youth Club, Ystradfellte for the Scout Summer Camp, Brodick Castle with the Church youth group, the trip to the Royal Tournament or any other organised outing please let us know what you remember of 30th July 1966. If you have any photographs we would be delighted if you share them on our website site.