Our first-ever season in senior football was barely one week old before we came up against Sharnbrook. But who are these early acquaintances of ours? Just a select few were there at the start of Boro’s footballing odyssey. So, we’ll let you off if you’re sitting there with no idea who we’re talking about. Given it’s now 40 years ago, even those who were there might also be none the wiser. So, let’s see if we can find out a bit more about ’em.
What else you gonna do with your Wednesday?
Who are Sharnbrook?
It isn’t proving easy to prove this one together, actually. From anecdotal evidence, the word is that 1891 is when the club formed in the Bedfordshire village. We can’t be 100% sure on that front. Mind you, we have no reason to doubt it either. The next part of the story we can find, however, is from the Football Club History Database; placing them in United Counties League Division Two for the start of the 1969-70 season.
Why do we know Sharnbrook?
The club made a decent enough start to UCL life; ending up fourth in both of their opening two seasons. As the 1970s wore on, however, they started to find themselves falling down the table; Division Two now called Division One, by the way. But they’d be back in Division Two soon enough. The 1977-8 season saw them relegated after finishing bottom with only three wins all season. Hmm. That sounds familiar. Not that they were gone for long…
What is our record against Sharnbrook?
The 1979-80 season saw Sharnbrook promoted back to Division One as runners-up. Now, we ain’t too sure how we ended up in Division One alongside ’em for the 1980-1 campaign. Not if there was a lower division. But we ain’t complaining. And it turns out that matchday four would be our first-ever encounter with them. This wasn’t good news for them because we’d hit the ground running in some style.
So, it came to pass in our match at Broadhall Way on 25 August; Boro’ running out easy 4-1 winners – though it was helped by Jim Daintree coming off the bench to score a brace. We weren’t kept waiting for a second meeting either. Three weeks later, our first match in the United Counties League Cup had us going up to theirs. And we made light work of it again; this time, winning 5-0.
Just one month and seven games into our first-ever campaign in senior football – and we’d played Sharnbook twice. What are the odds of that happening eh?
The return league fixture did, however, take longer to roll around in the schedule. In fact, it’d be our fourth-last match of term. For all our dominance in racing to the Division One crown, Sharnbook stood firm against us; earning a point in a 1-1 draw. . You can say this was a bit of a shock result as they ended up third-bottom come the end of the season. You could also say, though, it was a highly respectable point for them. Fair’s fair…
Sharnbrook: Boro’s Record
Our head-to-head: P 3 — W 2 — D 1 — L 0 — F 10– A 2 — Pts 4 — WR 67%
Our last tango: Sharnbrook 1-1 Stevenage Borough, 14 April 1981
What happened to Sharnbrook?
Like the start of the Sharnbrook story, we don’t know much about the end – or the path to now, as it should be. The club remained at the wrong end of the Division One table; twice finishing bottom in the mid-1980s. There was a mini-spike in their fortunes, however. And, in 1988-9, they finished third; a point behind Burton Park Wanderers in second, who’d go up to the Premier Division that season.
The Premier Division was a step too far, however. Sharnbrook started to sink back down to the foot of the Division One table during the 1990s. And that’s where they would stay. The 2000-1 campaign was their last in the United Counties League; propping up the table once more. We can only assume their next move was to the Bedfordshire County League after that. It’s where they are now and would make the most sense.
So, you can rule out a future meeting any time soon we reckon.
• WANT TO KNOW MORE? – Sharnbrook club profile