Syd looks back on 50 years in football

SYD Vice today looked back on his half century involvement with Kingsley Healthcare SIL club Framlingham Town.He was presented with a Football Association long-service award in recognition of his 50 years involvement in the game.

Elvin King

SYD Vice today looked back on his half century involvement with Kingsley Healthcare SIL club Framlingham Town.

He was presented with a Football Association long-service award in recognition of his 50 years involvement in the game.

“It was a lovely surprise and took place at Portman Road,” said Syd, who has been connected with Framlingham since 1959 and is now a lift vice president and committee member. Syd played for Glemham United in the Leiston League and Leiston before having a brief spell with Badingham shortly after coming out of the Army. Since then he has dedicated himself to the well-being of Framlingham Town and along with wife Christine still goes up the Badingham Road club seven days a week.


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“Christine has been involved with the club since 1962 and I couldn't have spent the time I have in football without her help,” added Syd.

“The thumbs would have been firmly pinned down.”

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Framlingham were denied entry to the Eastern Counties League after winning the SIL title in 1992 under the management of Mel Aldis because their changing rooms were too far from the pitch.

And they are still waiting to make the jump despite having accrued some of the best facilities in the county.

“Perhaps we should have concentrated a little more on winning games than investing in facilities,” said Syd, a prime mover in the provision of floodlights, stand and all the needs that a senior club must have. I have no regrets, but I look at an SIL table from 17 years ago and a good number of those teams who we beat to win the title are now playing in the Premier Division of the Ridgeons League.

“We are looking for a top-three place so that we can apply to go forward, and it may happen this season.”

In his playing days Syd won a host of trophies explaining: “We were one of the few big teams in the Leiston League.

“The majority of the sides were from villages and we won a lot of charity cups as well. When we moved into the SIL in the mid-sixties we found it tough for a while although we did beat Needham Market 6-1 in our opening match after leaving the Leiston League.”

Special events that stick out in Syd's mind are a 1-0 win over the all-conquering Nicholians side at the time, and he still has a letter from the then league secretary George Scopes congratulating Framlingham on the way they played.

“Winning the SIL was a highlight of course and we had it won with a month to go. And having a day out at Portman Road despite losing to Grundisburgh in the Suffolk Senior Cup was another good memory.

“The previous season we lost a quarter-final of the Senior Cup at Woodbridge Town when there were over 1,300 fans at the match. This must still be a record for a modern-day tie in the competition.”

Syd is not the only Framlingham Town official to have their efforts noticed this year with secretary Fiona Whatling also receiving a long service award having served the club for almost 40 years.

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