It’s amazing what you can find when venturing into the loft for the first time in years.
Things that have been wrapped, boxed and bundled through the loft hatch – only to be forgotten about until they next see the light of day.
How many of you have pushed this and that up there, out of the way, only to discover, years later, that they are of no use whatsoever, and end up binning them, and wondering why you didn’t do so in the first place?
Mind you, in amongst all the mess can sometimes be found little treasures, old books and toys or vintage records and games that, over the years, have become collectors items and worth a few bob.
Football memorabilia is one such commodity, with old programmes and annuals being highly sought-after.
So it was wonderful to hear from reader Barrie Downey who came across one such item while doing a bit of early “spring cleaning”.
“I came across this picture whilst cleaning out my loft,” explains Barrie.
“I was wondering if anyone could give me any information about it, and if it could be of any use to a football club or school?”
The picture, described as a “Shields Gazette cartoon” shows Marsden Juniors when they were playing in the Jarrow JOC League.
Although the cartoon is not dated, it is signed Dodge.
Some of the players mentioned include Ken Wilkes, Tom Todd, Sid Miller and Ray Stephenson.
Can you shed any light on the cartoon or the team and players portrayed? Please drop me a line if you can help Barrie shed more light on this lovely little “loft find”.
Meanwhile, Brian Kirkley got in touch after seeing the recent photo spread which shone a spotlight on members of the South Shields Harriers.
“The group at the bottom of the picture spread is South Shields Harriers’ successful under-18 youths team.
“They are, left to right, looking at the photo Alan Richardson, later the winner of the Blaydon Race as a senior, Dave Elliott, Derek Johston, Clint Jones and Laurie Nícholson, only a second outside four minutes for the mile and winner of the senior North of England 1,500m title.
“The photo at the bottom of the other page looked like the start of the Prinsky Race, from the County Hotel to Cleadon Village and back.
Left to right in that are Joe McCarron, Alan Ríchardson, Laurie Nicholson and Alan Bone. The boys’ race went from outside Gypsíes Green Stadium to the Coast Road, crossing over the Leas to finish in the stadium.
“The girl on the track could be Carol Edmundson, not in her club vest, but in the 21 club. Meeting held on the first Monday of Sports Week.”
Also making contact was Lee Hughes, who hoped readers would answer his SOS regarding some missing photos.
“Would any readers have photos of The John Wright Centre fancy dress parties?” asked Lee. “My late nana, Ada Hughes, was a volunteer for many years and we have lost the many photos that she had.” Again, if you can help, please contact me.