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Extra Time at Suffolk Archives

The Extra Time players really enjoyed their visit to Suffolk Archives in Lowestoft yesterday, where they discovered more about the All-Stars, as well as other, ‘nothing-to-do-with-football’, facts.

Before we got started, a quick show of hands showed that over 80% of the participants had never visited the Archives before, so there was lots for them to marvel at and admire.

Working with original press cuttings, maps, photographs and microfiche, the teams identified all manner of details that intrigued and delighted them.

“I knew about Terry Butcher,” one Pakefield Pitch Invader told me, “but I never knew he was born in Singapore and I wouldn’t have known that, if I hadn’t come here today.”

A Hildesley High Flyer was matched with a Pitch Invader and together they explored press cuttings, looking for news about factory teams. The High Flyer later told us:

“I’m not into football as such, but this is really, really interesting. The fact that there were so many teams from all round the area, people got together and enjoyed each other’s company whether they won or not, it’s been very, very interesting – from 1906 (that was the earliest one we found) up to almost the modern day, it’s very, very interesting and I’ve really enjoyed being able to research these things this afternoon.”

Along with the All-Star research, our players learned about ‘Lowestoft Time’ and how the town used to be 10 minutes ahead of London, until the trains came and time had to be standardised.

They also heard about a touching little Pakefield Valentine tradition, in which children knocked on doors and recited a Valentine Verse in return for fruit, sweets or even money. Apparently, the landlord at the Jolly Roger would place coins on the hob, before handing them to the children …

As the teams left, one child informed us that she had worked out that there were ‘loads of transcripts’ in the room; we suspect we may have an archivist in the making.

‘I had no idea there was so much here, I really want to come back and find out some more.’
‘It’s been incredibly interesting because there were things I would never have known, never imagined I would have known; I've really enjoyed finding out about all the different teams this afternoon.’
‘I worked out that there are loads of transcripts here.’