Dear Diary Entry 123

Dropping In From California

Charles Bamforth (right) with early 1960s Wolves reserve Vic Povey and some unmissable reading!

Monday, November 29: Always good to meet up with Charles Bamforth and the overdue visit to England that he and his wife Diane have made led to a lovely three-way get-together in a mid-Cheshire coffee shop this morning. As befits people who travel a lot, they are heading to the south-west in the next couple of days, so the window was fairly narrow – but very welcome.

Wednesday, December 1: Felt unusual and even a shade nostalgic to have a Wednesday night League game at Molineux – not that the goalless draw with Burnley will live too long in the memory. This used to be a kind fixture to Wolves across many seasons… recent times, it has been much more problematic, here and at Turf Moor.

Saturday, December 4: Was surprised to see Keith Andrews heading towards a Wolverhampton watering hole in the countdown to today’s visit of Liverpool to Molineux. The subsequent brief exchange confirmed that he was on a day off and ready to enjoy an afternoon among the fans. In the John Hendley media room before kick-off was David Edwards, who had played for Bala Town the night before and decided against going to see Shrewsbury at Carlisle in the FA Cup.

Sunday, December 19: Back to Molineux for Wolves v Chelsea, a good chat with Mel Eves and a hard-earned point. His first senior goal came away to the Londoners late in 1977-78 and was significant in winning Sammy Chung’s relegation-threatened side a valuable draw. The pressure feels much more off now after the recent upturn in results and few home supporters had any complaints today, even if it would be nice to see some more goals going in.

Wednesday, December 15: How good it was to have a second meeting of the new hall of fame committee at Molineux this morning – the best part of two years after the first. One of the Billy Wright’s executive boxes was the setting for a chat hosted by John Richards and the Wolves Former Players Association’s Richard Green as the first supporters began to gather outside the stadium for the long haul to Brighton. We look forward to saying more in the coming weeks.

John Pike (left) with his former BBC colleague, Ian Winter.

Thursday, December 23: Has been good to support the celebrations of John Pike’s 90th birthday this month. The veteran former BBC WM reporter, who I drove or accompanied to several games when he was the station’s Wolves correspondent in the 1980s, remains wonderful company and deserved the big day his family prepared for him. At the request of his son Russ, I sent an anecdote or two for use and saw to it that John Richards and Keith Downing – two of his favourite players for interviewing during a long Molineux tenure – did the same.

Friday, December 31: Sad though it is that Scotland’s major hogmanay celebrations have been banned, I made contact with Jim McCalliog and his wife Debbie to wish them a lovely evening and happy, healthy new year. They were generous in their kind wishes, too,

Sunday, January 2: Would love to have been going to Manchester United v Wolves tomorrow, as I did when Nuno’s men gleaned useful draws there in 2018 and 2020 and I sat among the home supporters. It will be something after recent postponements, though, just for the game to be played and on TV for the armchair masses.

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