Are you Reading FC's number 13?By Sally Bryant
October 24, 2012
Are you one of these jubilant Royals fans storming the Elm Park pitch, we think in the 80s?
Do you remember which match had just ended, the score, or why it was a special day for you?
We would love to hear from you if your face is in the crowd as this moment of glory is now larger than life and inspiring today’s fans.
The entrance to Madejski Stadium has had a facelift to celebrate Reading Football Club’s promotion to the Premier League.
Photographs capturing many triumphs over the years and Number 13 – the ‘shirt’ given to the fans – have been blown up on to huge canvases.
Emma Pierce, the club’s marketing director, said: “Because there is also the conference centre and hospitality rooms are used for business during the week, it has been kept quite generic in the past.
“This is really to celebrate going into the Premier League, to really make people feel they are going into a football stadium and to bring in the passion of the game.”
Club historian David Downs told the Reading Post: “I think it looks superb, it creates an atmosphere of the history of the football club.”
The earliest picture used is upstairs in the stadium and dates from the 1920s, when Reading entered the Football League.
The panorama that will greet thousands to games, as they pass through the entrance tunnel, follows the Royals from the 1950s to last season’s triumphant team.
Mr Downs, a volunteer and also the Academy safeguarding officer, is proud of it all, but he knows his favourites.
“The one closest to my heart is of players coming off the field at Port Vale. It’s the second picture on the right in reception.
“Reading had just beaten Port Vale 3-0 on May 5, 1979.
“Winning that game meant Reading became champions of Division 4, for the first time since 1926.”
The 24,200-seater Madejski Stadium opened in August 1998. From 1896 until then, home was Elm Park in West Reading.
Are you in the poster picture? Contact Sally Bryant on 0118 9183010 or email email@example.com