A grounding for life from school football

THIS week in Peeps into the Past, we see how skills acquired in a school football team can stand you in good stead for later life.

David Raggett, a regular reader, played football for Goldsworth County School and has photos of the team taken in 1949 and 1950.

ON THE BALL – The 1949 Goldsworth County Secondary School for boys football team, pictured in December

He says: “I am in both photos and was usually the goalkeeper, but sometimes I let the reserve goalie have a game. I then played as a wing back [called a midfielder today].”

David recalls the names of some of his team-mates. The 1949 photo shows, back row, from left: David Raggett, R Cox, B Coker, E Tedder, player unknown, B Munday. Front row: E Cashmore, D Trussler, K Ellis, K Morton, L May, M Cashmore.

In the 1950 photo, back row: B Coker, E Cashmore, sports master Mr Woodcock, David Raggett, L May, player unknown. Front row: B Chitty, T Hart, B Munday, K Ellis, R Cox, M Pink.

Mike Cashmore later played for Woking Football Club, says David, while he himself played for Woking schoolboys.

David spent three and a half years in the army doing his National Service but continued to play football. He recalls: “I joined the local Queen’s Regiment and was posted to West Germany, then spent two and a half years in Malaysia.

The Goldsworth Country Secondary School side a year later in 1950

“I played football for the Queen’s in West Germany and Singapore, and while in Malaysia we played a match against the Hampshire Regiment in Kuala Lumpur. Us players were always treated like royalty.”

However, his time doing National Service was not all fun and games. David later transferred to the Royal Fusiliers during the Suez crisis of 1956, when British and French troops landed in Egypt with the aim of regaining control of the Suez Canal following an invasion of the country by Israeli forces.

in which Israel, joined by British and French troops, invaded Egypt with the aim of regaining control of the Suez Canal.

Egypt’s president Gamal Abdel Nasser had nationalised the canal that had primarily been owned by Britain and France. David found himself in trenches along the canal facing Egyptian forces who had blocked the canal by sinking 40 ships.

History tells us Israel, Britain and France has conspired to plan the invasion, which was condemned  by both the USA and the USSR.

The canal was closed until March 1957 and it is said the episode “signified the end of Great Britain’s role as one of the world’s major powers”.

However, as for National Service, David says it never did him any harm.

* IF you have some memories or old pictures relating to the Woking area, call David Rose on 01483 838960, or drop a line to the News & Mail.

DAVID Rose is a local historian and writer who specialises in what he calls “the history within living memory” of people, places and events in the west Surrey area covering towns such as Woking and Guildford. He collects old photos and memorabilia relating to the area and the subject, and regularly gives illustrated local history talks to groups and societies. For enquiries and bookings please phone or email him at: davidrosemedia@gmail.com.

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