A tale in the shadow of West Ham’s Upton Park


It was 1958 and West Ham had just won the Second Division Championship. They were back in the top tier for the first time since 1930. Noel Cantwell a left-back, who came from Irish side Cork Athletic, was their captain – Noel made 43 appearances in all competitions and scored three goals in that 1958-59 season.

It was also the first time West Ham fans got to see a young lad who had come through their academy. That young man was Bobby Moore. Sir Bobby Moore, the future captain of England and the man who lifted the 1966 World Cup, made five appearances that season.

Meanwhile, in the shadows of Upton Park, there was another young Irishman (my father) who was starting his own journey at the Upton Park bus garage. He was just 16-years-old and had just arrived over to London from Ireland. As with a lot of countries at the time Ireland was going through very intolerant economic times and political changes.

This 16-year-old Irish lad (my father) had gotten a job as a conductor at Upton Park garage. Little did he know that this job would take him on a pilgrim to one of the most magical experiences in East London, West Ham United Football Club. This story will explore all the emotions of the West Ham area and the West Ham family. There is joy, excitement, sadness and at times you will be left scratching your head in wonderment.

When Adrian hurled down his gloves on Tuesday night every West Ham fan knew there was something spectacular about to happen. This story will bring you to this enchantment once again.

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