Monday, 24 December 2012

A Festive Parade of Rusty Rollers II

Winchester City.
Another half-season gone, another collection of neglected groundsman's equipment ready to show! Following on from last year's Festive Parade and May's End of Season Round-Up, let's take a look at this autumn and winter's collection of rusty rollers (also featuring a bonus unloved mini-tractor)...

I started the season at New Milton Town, but their ground was as tidy as Margot and Jerry's living room in The Good Life, each and every blade of grass lovingly groomed and polished, every piece of groundsman's equipment carefully tidied away before the match so as not to offend the guests.

Winchester City.
I had to wait until my second match at Winchester City to strike rusty gold. One roller lying beside their pea-gravel running track, plus a rusty little tractor just beyond (if you look very carefully, you can see the roller again in the second photo). This would make a great, if slightly dangerous toy for visiting children if it could be pulled out of its clump of weeds.

Gosport Borough.
Gosport Borough was my favourite ground of the first half of this season. Not only did they have a magnificent old wooden stand, but there were three rollers nonchalantly dotted around the ground, especially for me! Number one was this bright orange motorised jobby (above). Potentially, another dangerous toy for bored eight-year-olds whilst the match is going on.

Gosport Borough.
Gosport's second roller was so enormous that I couldn't fit it in to the photo above. Situated next to the club shop and surrounded by cars, this big boy is presumably dragged sideways whilst flattening the pitch? I can't work it out at all. Head-explodingly confusing.

Gosport Borough.
Gosport's third roller is a much more sensible chappie. I can see how this one works - pulled along by a sturdy ex-dray horse, it looks ideal for smoothing out all that awkward lumpy turf around the six-yard box.

Totton & Eling/AFC Totton.

A similar roller was spotted on the training pitch between AFC Totton and Totton & Eling's grounds. Presumably shared by both clubs, it looked splendid in the bright September sunshine.

Fawley AFC.
I've already shown Fawley's main roller in their FA Vase match report from October. Here, you can see it again with its best friend, the manky old trailer.

Fawley AFC.
The lucky players at Fawley get a bonus roller outside their changing rooms. It can be seen on the former tennis court in the photo above. Very rusty indeed.

Fleet Spurs.
I had to wait until half-time at Fleet Spurs before I could find the abandoned roller in the photo above. Lying neglected beneath some fallen branches next to a container just outside their ground...the saddest sight any roller-lover could possibly imagine. I was in floods...

With no groundsman's equipment visible at Ringwood Town, the final roller for this half-season comes from Sholing's ground, or more accurately, from just outside their Silverlake Arena. Nicely proportioned, it is shared with the neighbouring cricket ground.

Merry Christmas everyone!

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