It’s not long now until the start of the 2010-2011 Irish League season. For Linfield, it’s not just any season, as the club will celebrate it’s 125th anniversary in March 2011. With 49 league titles already claimed, the motivation (if it was ever needed) is there for the club to win a milestone league triumph in a milestone season.
The previous 124 years have provided some moments of great Northern Ireland football history, and unsurprisingly, some of the players who helped created these moments are immortalised in mural form in Belfast.
To my knowledge (Please feel free to correct), there are four Linfield related murals in Belfast.
The first, is part of two murals in the Village area of South Belfast, close to the club’s Windsor Park ground.
Titled ‘Football Heroes‘, it commemorates the careers of Joe Bambrick, Tommy Dickson and Elisha Scott, all of whom have been associated with the club in an illustrious fashion.
Elisha Scott is also well associated with Belfast Celtic and Liverpool, with last year, a ceremony taking place to commemorate this by having the two clubs crests inscribed on his headstone.
Until 1992, Joe Bambrick was Northern Ireland’s joint all-time top scorer. In 2006, his former house in Roden Street, not far from the mural of him had a plaque erected to commemorate his footballing achievements.
Tommy Dickson, who died on New Year’s Eve 2007, was affectionately known as the ‘Duke Of Windsor‘, was honoured with a mural in the Taughmonagh Estate in March 2008, though it was officially unveiled at a ceremony in April 2008.
Not far from the ‘Football Heroes’ mural is a mural featuring the crests of Linfield and the Northern Ireland national team titled ‘For Club And Country’, to symbolise Linfield fans support for their national team, alongside their club.
I don’t actually have a photo of it, but there is a photo of it on Flickr by another photographer.
Amongst the many achievements in Linfield’s history, the one that is remembered fondly is the Seven-trophy Clean Sweep of 1962 (A team which Tommy Dickson was a part of)
This team was immortalised with a mural just off the Shankill Road in the summer of 2006. This mural, was photographed in September 2007.
Linfield’s achievements have also inspired graffiti, such as one in Belvoir celebrating the 2006 title win, and one in East Belfast scoring out ‘GFC’ (To symbolise Linfield’s arch-rivals Glentoran) and replacing it with LFC.
For further reading on Bambrick, Dickson and Scott :
Regular readers will know that I enjoy indulging in amateur photography at Linfield matches. There have been a lot of disasters, but I have had some successes. A bit like David Jeffrey’s transfer record in 2008 and 2009 you could say.
Some of my favourite photos include this one of Glenn Ferguson embracing a fan at Seaview after winning the league in 2008. It’s really sums what supporting Linfield and the joy of winning means to me.
A photo I took a week earlier at Lurgan, as Linfield virtually clinched the title is this one of Linfield fans roaring their team on. I don’t know why I love this photo, I just do.
A third photo is of David Jeffrey methodically surveying the game at the Ballymena Showgrounds in 2009.
Again, I don’t know why I love this photo, I just do.
My final favourite photo is of Windsor Park in November 2008, during a torrential rainstorm after a match against Dungannon Swifts.
I’d decided to wait behind and let other people out first (I was walking home and was hoping the rain would pass by the time I got out) so I decided to get a photo of the ground in such adverse weather.
I suppose you could say, come rain or shine, there will always be a Linfield FC to create memories.
Let’s hope the 2010-2011 season is as memorable for it’s achievements on the pitch as it will be for the milestone off the pitch.