Better Then than Now

Better Then than Now
A History of Tunbridge Wells Rangers and Tunbridge Wells [Two Blues]

The author, Roger Bassett, was born in Frant and attended Skinners School Tunbridge Wells. His love of football started at a young age and he progressed to play for Elmville ( Beckenham League ), Frant and Wadhurst Toc H as a goalkeeper. At the age of 14 he watched his first Tunbridge Wells match at Eridge Road against Snowdown CW on the I8th December 1954, a game United won 2-0. Some 5 years later in July 1959 he received a letter from Gordon Hurst asking him to sign for Tunbridge Wells, this after a successful trial at the end of the previous season and a summer’s training at the Hilbert Rec. Played for the Probables against the Possibles on August 8th 1959 at Eridge Road and rather hastily decided senior football was not for him and ­returned to local football, a decision he has always regretted. Continued to follow the club but as years went by became disillusioned with the continuous diet of Kent League football, the standard of which leaves a lot to be desired. It becomes particularly disheartening when you realise that not only do they continue to be in the shadow of Tonbridge Angels but more recently that of Crowborough Athletic.

The motivation to research the History of the Rangers came from speaking to Ipswich Town FC about their first professional match against the Rangers. The research over the last 18 months has been most rewarding and if one could go back his wish would be to be one of the crowd that carried Charlie Spencer shoulder high from the Central Station to the Opera House on winning the Kent League in 1930-31, what local ­enthusiasm.

Looking forward, one just hopes that after over 40 years Tunbridge Wells FC make progress up the pyramid and ­ perhaps - one day even reach the 1st round proper of the FA Cup again.

Published by Greenman Enterprise, Greenman Farm, Wadhurst, East Sussex TN5 6LE
printed by The Ink Pot, Victoria Road, Southborough, Kent TN4 0LT

Copies may also be obtained from the author
at Lavender House, Lower Platts, Ticehurst, East Sussex, TN5 7BY
or ordered on 01580 201 373 or by e-mail
ISBN 978-0-9545802-4-7 Price £12.95