CCFPA Helps Coventry Ladies Turn Back the Clock to 1917!

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No Game For Girls miniYesterday (Monday, on August 25th 2014) CCFPA were pleased to help sponsor the historic re-enactment at the Butts Arena by Coventry City Ladies and other local women footballers of a ladies WW1 football match between two factory teams (which had taken place at the Butts in 1917). There was considerable media coverage and readers may have seen coverage of the game on local TV news. Unfortunately the exceedingly wet bank holiday weather affected the attendance somewhat but those that were there including a number of CCFC former players and CCFPA committee members enjoyed a great event.

Sky Blues F.A.Cup star Dave Bennett, key eighties defender Kirk Stephens and sixties CCFC stalwarts Dietmar Bruck and Bill Tedds were at the Butts together with CCFPA committee men Mike Young and Dean Nelson.   Mike and CCFPA Associate member Lionel Bird had done much to underpin the historical research for the event and Lionel also appeared resplendent in historical costume to match the players, officials and other attendees. Coventry City Council leader Anne Lucas and ‘Mr Coventry’ CCFPA’s Life president Joe Elliott led out the teams and kicked off each half and CCFPA vice chair Billy Bell, dressed in somewhat dubious vintage clothing, acted as m/c for the day.

Cov Ladies as 1917 teams combinedThe game itself was fought out with skill and stamina between the two teams in period gear representing the finalists in the Coventry Ladies Cup Final of September 1917. In a repeat of the original result the ‘Humber Ladies’ team again ran out winners besting the ‘Rudge-Whitworth’ Ladies, this time by 7 goals to 2. The game is just one part an ongoing project (with Heritage Lottery funding) exploring the early days of women’s football in Coventry which was an important centre for the ladies Game with a touring exhibition and other events to follow.

Look out on this site for action photographs and personalities present on the day in due course. Thanks to Fran Porter and her colleagues at Mad Dog Media/Eyefull Productions for organising such an interesting and enjoyable event focussing on the economic and sporting role the women of Coventry played in 1914-18.

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CCFPA Members Survey Now Closed

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CCFPA Darker Logo 2012The Association would like all Full, Associate, Honorary and Corporate Members to note that the deadline for return of your Members’ survey questionnaire has passed and the survey is now offically closed.  The purpose of the survey to ascertain member’s views about CCFPA’s stance towards the Club’s continuing sojourn at Sixfields has happily been overtaken by events with the announcement of a Ricoh return on Friday 5th September. Thanks to all those who sent in their votes.

CCFPA hope that our service to members of all types will return to normal at the Ricoh as soon as possible after that (look out for announcements on this site when our arrangements have been firmed up). The results of our survey will be collated, analysed and reported to the September committee meeting of CCFPA at the Ricoh.

Sky Blue Legends at Historic Re-Enactment of a WW1 Cov. Ladies Football Game next Monday: Join Us!

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No Game For Girls smallNext Monday, on August 25th 2014  (kick off 2pm) Coventry City Ladies will re-enact a women’s WW1 football match between two factory teams at the Butts in 1917. The contemporary Coventry Ladies club who have built up good links with CCFPA had a wonderful 2013-14 season (topping their League) and seem set fair to do well again this coming season but as we show below they weren’t the first manifestation of a desire by women in Coventry to play ‘the beautiful game’.

No Game For Girls miniWe expect a number of CCFC former players and members of the CCFPA committee to be in attendance for the event including (subject to confirmation) Sky Blue F.A.Cup stars Dave Bennett, Micky Gynn and Cyrille Regis, and sixties CCFC stalwarts Dietmar Bruck and Bill Tedds.  Coventry City Council leader Anne Lucas and ‘Mr Coventry’ CCFPA’s Life president Joe Elliott are booked to lead out the teams and kick off each half and it is hoped that the Mayor, Councillor Hazel Noonan will present the cup and the medals to the winning team.

It is an important part of an ongoing project, with Heritage Lottery funding, exploring the early days of women’s football in Coventry which was an important centre for the ladies Game. An exhibition and other events are also planned. The project and the game are supported by CCFPA. During World War One, with so many men at the front, Coventry women took their places in the munitions factories of the City. The 1914-18 years gave the women’s game a fillip as many ladies took up football with enthusiasm and entered teams in inter factory competition. The Coventry Ladies Cup Final of September 1917 between Humber Ladies and Rudge-Whitworth Ladies will be replayed in the costumes and conditions of the time – and once more at the Butts.  Some of Coventry Ladies are shown in their period gear below (so smart that ‘selfies’ were called for!).

Cov Ladies as 1917 teams combinedAfter WW1 women’s football built up tremendous popularity throughout Britain with five figure crowds and well supported women’s internationals often in aid of charity. As far as we can establish Coventry Ladies (below) was founded in spring 1921 and we need to be reminded that later in the year well over 20000 paying customers turned out at Highfield Road to see Coventry Ladies take on the top women’s team of the period from the Dick, Kerr factory from Preston. The women’s game went into decline when the F.A. shamefully denied women’s teams access to the professional football grounds of the day in December 1921.

The Association encourages all it’s readers to support what should be a memorable day. Come dressed for 1917 or 2014 but do come and sample an important reminder of the heritage of football in Coventry. More information can be found via facebook.com/NoGameForGirls Tickets priced £5 adults (under 12s free) can be obtained online by clicking here.

Sky Blues Ricoh Return: Members Initial Reactions

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CCFPA’s Roy Barry sandwiched by committee members Bob Eales & Billy Bell with Jimmy Hill at the Ricoh before the Sixfield’s exile

Today’s announcement that Sky Blue gaffer (and CCFPA member) Steve Pressley and his squad will be returning to the Ricoh to play home games next month is one which has been already welcomed by the Manager. The news comes the day before the deadline for return of the (now possibly superfluous) CCFPA’s Member’s Survey on their views of the (then apparently) continuing exile in Northampton.  Reactions from a growing number of CCFPA members via the social networks are starting to come in:-

Coventry City agree to go back to the Ricoh arena great news start of a great comeback!’ (David Thompson)

‘Great news. Coventry City to return to the Ricoh’ (Micky Quinn)

We are back at The Ricoh…. so pleased for all the fans who have worked so hard to make it happen well done all of you’. (Steve Froggatt)

‘Good to see Coventry City back at the Ricoh’ (Cyrus Christie)

Great to see Coventry City going back home to Ricoh!! Fantastic stadium! Will bring the fans back!’  (Andy Morrell)

Great news regarding Coventry City today, the persistence of so many got it’s just rewards’.  (Terry Gibson)

‘Great news that Coventry City will be back playing at the Ricoh Arena,time for all fans to get behind the Club’  (Darren Huckerby)

and both former player and manager of the Sky Blues, Bobby Gould tweeted:-

“I believe The Sky Blues are going home ! Happiest Day since I got married, Coventry here we come xxxx”

COVCITY TIE Changed LogoThough the announced deal bringing the Club back to the Ricoh may not universally popular particularly with those parts of the Sky Blue ‘family’ who still have a deep distrust of the Club’s owners, the return must be great news particularly for many of CCFPA’s veteran members and Diamond Club fans who feared their chances of seeing their Club play once again in Coventry surrounded by their friends and family were going if not gone. Though it is early days yet the return should also allow the camaraderie of places like the Legends Lounge at the Ricoh during games at the Ricoh and post-match Lady Gs at G-Casino to be rekindled.  The Association can now start to think about reuniting former players and fans again and planning another Legends Day.

We are sure our former players will be looking forward to meeting their friends and former colleagues once again at a Sky Blues home game in Coventry. Plans appear to be that the team’s first reappearance at the Ricoh for well over a year will be on Friday night the 5th of September against Gillingham (an evening game moved forward from Saturday afternoon for the benefit of Sky coverage).

Look out on this site for further announcements from CCFPA on future arrangements at the Sky Blues’ home games as things are firmed up.