Oh yeah, it’s that time of the week once more. Or “Wednesday”, as it is better known round these here parts. In the search for something to keep us busy on these lonely close season days and nights, we are trundling on with our Remember Them series. Out of the 300+ clubs in our archives, some have become more familiar than others. For all those times we had to go to W*king, there were the rare trips to citadels like Long Buckby and Southall. So, this time out, we’re asking who and a what now were, are and – indeed – will be Harefield United.
“Harefield” is noted in the Domesday Book as Herefelle. This, apparently, comes from the Anglo-Saxon terms for ‘[Danish] army’ and ‘field’. The things you learn with BoroGuide, eh? The name “Harefield United”, however, does not have such luxurious origins, for the club merely takes its moniker from the village in which you’ll find it. Yet, the Hares can proudly claim to be the oldest club in Middlesex. Founded in 1868, they are just six years younger than Notts County. And that’s quite impressive when you think about it. Next year, they’ll be 150!
Harefield United: Us And Them
The obvious milestone in the Hares’ long tale (from our humble point of view, of course) came in November 1984. It was the club’s debut season in the Servowarm (Isthmian) League Division Two North. It was also the first campaign that Stevenage Borough took part in the competition too. As convention says that two plus two equals four, you’ll soon realise it was in this season that us and them met for the first time. Much like Flackwell Heath, as it goes. Remember them? Our first match against Harefield United took us to Preston Park.
Aaand we’ll gloss over that one, if you don’t mind. Boro’ lost 2-0 and all we’ll say is this: if you know the Boro’ line-up that day, please tell us. We haven’t a clue! The return game saw us share the spoils; Martin Sperrin and Steve Armsby scoring in a 2-2 draw at Broadhall Way. It was the last time (for now) that Boro’ conceded to the Hares. The following season, we drew 0-0 at their gaff and then (finally) beat them for the first time in four attempts. We won 3-0, and this was in no small part to Martin Gittings’ and one of his trademark hattricks.
So, why was the 1985-6 season the last we’ve seen of Harefield United to date? Well, we went up to Division One for a start. But there was also a change in scenery for the Hares too. After a bit of card shuffling by the powers that be at Isthmian League HQ, they made the move sideways into Division Two South. It’s why, when we went back down, we didn’t have the chance to renew acquaintances. Nowadays, you can find them in the Spartan South Midlands League – their home since being founder members of the competition 20 years ago.
Boro’s Record vs Harefield United
P4 W1 D2 L1 F5 A4 – League Points: 5, Cup Meetings: 0, Win Rate: 25%
BoroGuide’s Harefield United club profile – for old time’s sake…