Thirty Memorable Years: 1984-85

posted in: Thirty Memorable Years | 1

Season 5 1984-85

This season’s squad included those Year 5 players from the previous season and after very close ‘trials’ matches, we played our first league match at home to Newbury and recorded a 3-0 victory, with goals from John Buchanan and two from James Tilley. Next up was the visit of Deeside and although we lost a close fought match 2-1, Michael Tighe scoring, the performance was excellent. The next match was away to Mid Oxon in a friendly and a rather sloopy performance ended in a 4-7 defeat (goals from Andrew Wallbridge, Paul Lawman, Michael Tighe and Mark Blackmore); however, the team then went on to play the next five matches undefeated, four wins and one draw. During that run of matches, one player was withdrawn from the squad and was replaced by Jonathan Garside, a Year 5 player.  Our league match away to Reading finished with a 3-5 defeat, but the result was unique inasmuch as it was the only game over the 30 years when a Vale player scored a hat-trick, but finished on the losing side. James Tilley was the player to get the three goals at Reading.

During the season we reached the semi-final of the Witney Cup, going out 1-0 at Bracknell, and we set off on our Easter Tour in good heart. The first match on Tour was at Wyre Forest and a 3-0 win, goals from James Tilley, Mark Blackmore and Jonathan Garside, meant we were to play Deeside the following day on a winning run! In an enthralling match we managed to avoid defeat for the first time! The final score was 5-5 with Vale’s goals coming from Martin Neal and two each from John Buchanan and James Tilley.

The members of the squad were, Gordon Berry, Mark Blackmore, John Buchanan, Anthony Creed, Paul French, Jonathan Garside (Y5), Simon Hendy, Paul Lawman, Martin Neal, Mark Quarterman, Jamie Smith, Michael Tighe, James Tilley and Andrew Wallbridge.

Jamie Smith was the captain, James Tilley top scorer with 20 goals and the President’s Trophy was awarded to Andrew Wallbridge.



  1. Mike Williams

    I remember that year extremely well as there were initially three, then two , representatives from my school, Dunmore, in the squad. This was the season that Dunmore finished runners-up in the Smiths Cup at Wembley.

    Mike Williams

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