August 12 2017: under the weather

Seduced by the early sunshine and by the solemn promise of Mr Tomasz Schafernaker that the weekend would have something about it, I head for Seaham along the coast line, dressed appropriately.

By 1 30pm the sky’s as grey as the North Sea, which balefully returns the stare.

Perused en route, The Times has a story about a school in Darlington which has appointed pupils as secret shoppers to report back on the teachers.

“Underhand, deceitful and incompatible with the normal order of relationships in school,” says the union lady. And they thought that we were bad.

By the time of the mile walk up the hill from the station it’s raining, spirits lifted when Seaham secretary Dave Copeland at once stands a pint in that smashing little steel-clad clubhouse.

Dave, a fantastic football man, is also the Wearside League’s registrations secretary, a member of Durham FA and has long been much involved with the myriad Russell Foster Youth League. “My wife keeps on asking when we’re going to have a holiday,” he says.

Red Star are playing Marske United, the programme noting that Jordan Hugill – rumoured to be on the verge of a £5m move from Preston North End to Sunderland – played for both clubs and for Consett and Whitby Town, too.

There’s also a photograph. The lad has more tattoos than Edinburgh Castle.

Though Seaham score early, Marske’s 4-1 win is quite comfortable. That Danny Earl’s a good player, isn’t he?

The crowd’s 111, a number inexplicably regarded by the cricket fraternity as unlucky. Perhaps it’s just unlucky for me, because before I get back to the station it’s raining again.

Mr Schafernaker has much for which to answer.

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