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The Bromley Boys by Dave Roberts

I had to go to Frankfurt on business a few days back and popped into the book shop at London City Airport for a quick look around.
On the latest best sellers stand was the title above...now being from Bromley this of course immediately caught my eye.
It turns out that this book was written by a guy now living in New Zealand about how as a young impressionable and 'soft in the head' 14 year old he somehow found himself supporting Bromley Town Football Club (The Lillywhites)during the 1969/70 seaon which by any stretch of the immagination was the worst in their(or almost anyone elses come to that), history.
He was something of a loner in many ways and was a slightly overweight lad who was the perenial goalkeeper in kick abouts in the local park as well as last in the line to be chosen for any sports event of any kind.
He was evidently quite a brainy little chap as he attended Sevenoaks School (straw bloater and all), which incidently he absolutely hated and was bullied somewhat during his time there.
It's got a sort of innocent Adrian Mole type style to it, very humourous and is by anyones stretch of the immagination a lovely read, your heart goes out to the poor lad....I thoroughly recommend it as a tribute to the human spirit and example of stoicism in the face of not inconsiderable adversity/peergroup pressure from the local Arsenal, Chelsea wannabes as well as the local skinheads.
To add to my own personal pleasure, two of the players that get mentioned quite a bit are Johnny (Ginger) Warman (Phil's elder brother) and Phil Amato both of whom I played alongside at various times in the 60's in The Met League.......it also turns out that No 7 Grasemere Road (where he lived at the time all this took place), is just a two minute walk from my front door.
Local sports journalist Tony Flood(who some of you may have come across), also get's a few mentions.
Get this book,I guarantee you won't regret it, it shows yet another intriguing and comical aspect of 'The Beautiful Game.'
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Comments

  • Thanks for that Soundas, sounds well worth a read.

    Johnny Warman was, until he retired a few years back, my postman. Nice guy.
  • is Phil Amato ex-CAFC (keeper) Nat Amato's dad ??
  • no his dad was Tony, uncle perhaps?
  • yeah, Tony that's right. Grew up with my Dad.
  • mine too Large, had many a hair cut by him too, you ?
  • I'm just 2 mins from Grasemere Road aswell! Farnaby Road to be precise.
    Book sounds interesting, might give it a look.
  • mine too large and GHE

    saw Nathan at a party last year , cuts hair at Tonys place now
  • [cite]Posted By: Ollywozere[/cite]I'm just 2 mins from Grasemere Road aswell! Farnaby Road to be precise.
    Book sounds interesting, might give it a look.

    Farnaby Road Olly......I bet you don't know who used to live there back in the mid sixties.......none other than Geno Washington!
  • Wot, Dexys Geno ?
  • Yup, the very same Geno that they wrote the song about.
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  • Read a good review of the book in When Saturday Comes recently, definitely one I'll be picking up sooner or later.
  • Geno Washington called his backing band "The Ram Jam club" after a club of that name in Brixton in the 60s. Geno Washington came over to the Uk first when he was stationed here in the USAF.

    He's still touring, doing a gig in Blackheath in November if anyone is interested:

    http://www.visitlondon.com/events/detail/3897859
  • edited August 2008
    Anyone who orders the book through the following link will be aiding Charlton Life:

    The Bromley Boys: The True Story of Supporting the Worst Football Team in Britain
  • edited August 2008
    BFR...they were definately The Ram Band..and he didn't call them by that name they did and he just sang with them...they were around(some 3 or 4 years at a guess) well before The Ram Jam Club in Brixton was created circa 1966....how do I know this...because I worked for them and Pete Gage who formed the band in Springbank Road Hither Green where the band rehearsed every day in his mothers house. Pete was my patrol leader in the Scouts....9th Lewisham North Troop attached to St Mildreds Church.
    He later married Elkie Brooks...I was their best man they later formed Vinegar Joe with Elkie and Robert Palmer as the singers.
    I'll be at Blackheath that's for sure.
  • I'll have some of that;
    keep us informed.
  • The film of the book is in post production. Some well known actors involved - Alan Davis, Martine McCutcheon, Jamie Foreman and Daniel Hill among others.
  • He wrote a book called Home and Away based on last season (Bromley's first in the National league) that is well worth a read.
  • Film coming out soon filmed within the borough.
  • Terrific news!
  • Whatever happened to @BlackForestReds ... Hope he's ok
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  • Isn't this an old book that I read years ago about the season Bromley went on an incredible losing streak or is that another book?
  • edited April 2017
    I think the film is based on The Bromley Boys.......which was published some 9 years back.
  • Isn't this an old book that I read years ago about the season Bromley went on an incredible losing streak or is that another book?

    Bromley Boys is based on a season in the 60s. He's also done another one based on last season
  • LouisMend said:

    Isn't this an old book that I read years ago about the season Bromley went on an incredible losing streak or is that another book?

    Bromley Boys is based on a season in the 60s. He's also done another one based on last season
    And a book about getting rid of his programme collection
  • Yup 32 programmes, I can recommend them all.
  • its a cracking read isnt "soundas" especially if you are of the era and locality ..definitely has a resonance
  • By reading these comments have just bought Brimley boys on kindle hope it's good
  • By reading these comments have just bought Brimley boys on kindle hope it's good

    Wilford_Brimley.jpg
    1400 x 1420 - 85K
  • http://m.imdb.com/title/tt2179231/

    A friend of mine has produced the film. I didn't go to the early screening as it looks a little naff to be honest....
  • yeah, Tony that's right. Grew up with my Dad.

    I knew Nathan as a kid.

    They had the hair salon on Eltham Green didn't they?
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