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Mark Radcliffe Remembers Maine Road (and Helen ‘The Bell’)

Posted by Ali Johnson on

Mark Radcliffe Remembers Maine Road (and Helen ‘The Bell’)

The first in a series of posts from friends and football fans sharing their fond memories of some of the grounds featured in our Lost Destination series of prints.

Mark Radcliffe (and Stuart Maconie) on BBC 6 Music are the reason the studio can function in the afternoon after the morning coffee has worn off. He's the kind of guy we'd happily share a pre-match pint fact we probably now owe him one. Thanks Mark!

“I have so many great memories of Maine Rd. I first went with my dad and brother in the early 70’s and sat on the North Stand watching Colin Bell, Mike Summerbee, Franny Lee and Joe Corrigan. We were sitting near the formidable looking lady with the blonde beehive hairdo who used to ring a bell throughout the game. At one point, having so little to do, Joe Corrigan came over to the front row and asked someone what the time was!

We are of course smarting after a recent not unexpected derby defeat at Old Trafford but I was just remembering the great 3-1 win in November 2002 when Shaun Goater stole the ball from a hapless Gary Nevile. How we enjoyed that on the Kippax.

 Later that day I got food poisoning and missed my Radio 1 show on the Monday afternoon. Everyone thought I had been partying too hard in celebration and as that version of events seemed a bit more rock and roll, I let them carry on thinking that.
However I also recall being on the top tier of the Kippax stand and watching us lose 0-1 to Bury whilst over the city rooftops I could see the distant lights of Old Trafford as they played some big European team in the champions league. It was character building I guess.
My last memory of Maine Rd. was driving down there when they were demolishing it. The contractors gave me a sky blue brick from the façade of the main stand. I’ve still got it.

I do miss the ground. I used to meet my dad and brother and a few mates in the Red Lion at Withington and then wander down to the match.

I know nothing stays the same forever but I’ve never felt the same connection with the Etihad really. Perhaps it will come in time.”
Mark Radcliffe (writer, broadcaster, musician and City fan)

Dorothy's Maine Road print can be bought here >

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