Second XI Match Reports: 2017-18

Saturday, September 9th 2017

Convocation 3, Essemmay O.B. 8

Convocation (4-4-2): Willis; McCormack, Madeloso, Prince, Lamb B; Kearney, Shanahan, Poole I, Holder; Schofield R, Houston; Subs: McLaren, Southern (not used)


Jimmy Buffet writes:

Steadfastly resisting the modern trend to arrange amateur football games in August, Convocation’s Second Team Fixture Secretary insisted the team’s season curtain raiser should be on the first Saturday in September and not earlier.  Accordingly, Andy Big Mac took his charges off to Fazakerley to play the chaps of St. Martins, where a 2.00 kick off beckoned but delayed somewhat by the tardiness of the caretaker.  Behind every cloud lies that silver lining and the delay allowed the assembled chaps to get to know each other again with embraces of the usual gung-ho combined with admiring glances of a splendid array of the usual sartorial fastidiousness.

So, onto the game, the beautiful late summer sunlight filtered through the trees of Fazakerley and shone on a splendid line up of: Jack in goal; Lamb, Jamie, Now TV Lee and new Liam in defence; a midfield of Simon (Noddy) Holder, the Poole brothers, and Paul (Len) Fairclough; topped off by Richie (Andrew) Schofield and Colin (John) Knox up front.  Substitutes were Andy (Malcolm) McLaren and Paul (Etuhu) Dickson

A disgracefully attired referee got the game kicked off in the style of an odd job challenge where the head of James Bond has to be knocked off by a spinning bowler hat and shouts and jeers occupied the area; however, it isn’t so long since the pitch was filled with the sound of children’s laughter as boys and girls who were grateful to have found a new home played hopscotch and hurried to the chapel at the top of the road alongside the field.

It was once the haven for Fazakerley Cottage Homes, where hundreds of Liverpool children grew up safe and secure after being left without a family to call their own.  “I was the most miserable child in the world the day I arrived and I can, on three occasions, remember climbing down the drainpipe from my upstairs dormitory window,” wrote one late resident, who moved there in 1949.  But he continued: “I began to settle down and make friends and, although not ideal, the house mothers and the head of the home, Mr and Mrs Phillips, made my stay a very happy and pleasant one.”

Fazakerley Cottage Homes were built in 1888 and opened in March 1889 after it was decided that workhouses were not the best places for children, partly because other adults who were housed there too were not always the best influence.  They put a roof over the heads of youngsters who had been orphaned or whose parents had been unable to support them or who had abandoned them.

Local historian Laird Hatters says: “I knew the Cottage Homes very well in the period 1959-1964. We would travel by bus from the Kirkby Aldi a few miles away.  “The homes were pretty grim. We sometimes saw rather forlorn children looking at us from the gloomy windows. They used to go the big hall or chapel in the centre of the complex, I think possibly for lessons as well.  “We changed for sports in one of the cottages before running out on to the nearby playing fields. The cottages were old-fashioned and quite eerie but the surroundings were pleasant.”

There were 24 cottages on the estate, designed like a small model village, and each could house up to 25 children until its closure in 1959.  The village was completed with a central hall which acted as a chapel and a school, as well as a swimming pool, an infirmary and lodges.


Congratulations to Billy Lamb, starting his 40th consecutive season for Convocation.

A great pass from Holder to Schofield for the 3rd goal.

A bit of an argument between Lee and Colin over his continual failures in front of goal – mind you Colin was playing in the style of Sean Dundee.

Paul Fairclough playing like Christian Poulsen.

Lee and Jamie constantly getting in each other’s way and blaming others.

The game finished 2 goals to St. Martins and 4 goals to Convocation.  Man of the Match – Simon Holder who managed to overcome the depression caused by the holiday closure of Hannah’s fish shop to have a great game.

Following the game, the chaps were entertained to cheese sandwiches with a choice of brown bread for the health conscious in the delightful Holy Name Social Club which did not stock any local beers.

Next up: Essemay (St Margaret’s Aigburth) now, they did have some teachers…….