GEOFF CRAMBIE: The ancient Wycoller Hall

Dateline - Autumn 1999. Venue - the ancient Wycoller Hall and here in this week’s picture, a young boy just seven years old, knowing no fear, sits on the very top of the towering building.

While growing up, he would, on his many visits to Wycoller, always make a beeline for the hall, climbing up as fast as he could and then shouting down to his family, “I’m top of the world”!

From a very young toddler, he would go out on countryside walks with his family and here in our many local beauty spots, would see resplendent roe deer, bounding brown hares and a wayfaring water shrew.

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Among the many birds seen was a spectacular sparrowhawk, knavish kestrels and garish goldfinches. His mum got the shock of her life when he brought home a huge dead carrion crow, proudly held high in the living room!

His school days were at Lord Street where, in a wonderful ten-nil win for the school football team, he would score five super goals. On to Primet High for more happy days as the captain of the school’s all-conquering basketball team,

He goes to his first cricket match on the Horsfield on a hot, sunny August day in 1998 and shakes the hand of visiting legend, Stanley Jayasinghe, the master batsman of the famed 1959 “Double Winners”.

A year on and in December, 1999, he sees his first football match at Turf Moor becoming a true Claret, following Burnley home and away. Later, he would meet every single one of the mighty and celebrated champion winning side of 1959-60 including the illustrious Jimmy McIlroy and the renowned Jimmy Adamson.

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Over the years, visits to Stamford Bridge in November, 2008, a night of wonder beating Chelsea, Wembley Stadium, May, 2009, and a day never to be forgotten as a magnificent Burnley win the play-off final for the Premiership. Also, glittering Turf Moor matches Robbie Blake’s famous goal to beat Manchester United in the Prem in August, 2009, and then Chris Twelumo’s stunning hat-trick as we win against all odds just a few weeks ago against Preston North End. Many matches, so many memories.

The young boy in our photograph becomes a teenager playing snooker and pool for the Alexandra Snooker Hall in Nelson and by 2009, is a student at the newly opened Burnley College, then proudly passing his driving test this very year of 2010.

So who is our intrepid fearless climber of yesteryear? Well, just yesterday, he was 18 years old and as a proud granddad, I send all my love as do all our family to my dear grandson, Nathan.

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