The stadium announcers who have soundtracked English football

January 16, 2020 0 Comments

George Sephton has been on the mic at Anfield for 49 years and Peter Gilham has been doing the job even longer for Brentford. His booming voice are going to be familiar to all or any those that visit Anfield. it’s a voice that has accompanied all of the magical European nights Liverpool have enjoyed over the last five decades also as nearly every domestic match for the last 48 years. George Sephton’s debut because the stadium announcer on 14 August 1971 was somewhat overshadowed by another debutant who had been brought in by Bill Shankly from Scunthorpe United over the summer. Kevin Keegan only took 12 minutes to urge on to the scoresheet as Liverpool ran out 3-1 winners over Nottingham Forest. Keegan went on to attain 100 goals in his six years for the club, with Sephton there to witness the overwhelming majority of them from his precarious perch on the tv gantry. agen sbobet

Keegan remains one among Sephton’s favourite players. “He was certainly one among the best ,” Sephton says. “His whole attitude to football, to life, his unbelievable work rate, he was the complete package. I remember somebody came in, looked over my shoulder and commented: ‘That new kid’s a touch of a tiger isn’t he.’ That summed him up really.” Sephton has only missed a couple of games and he can explain all of them , going back to his first absence in 1973. “I was groomsman at a marriage so I got the guy who was the DJ at Tommy Smith’s nightclub to deputise.”

He had no formal training and only applied for the role after hearing his predecessor making a hash of the work . “He was susceptible to making bloomers,” Sephton says. “Like putting records on at the incorrect speed or mispronouncing the players’ names. Once he actually turned the PA on as Tommy Smith was close to take a penalty. So I said to my wife, this guy’s a humiliation to the club and she or he said: ‘It’s alright for you. I bet you couldn’t do any better’. which was it. Out of sheer pig-headedness I sent an extended letter to Peter Robinson, the club secretary, and it happened to land on his desk even as that they had decided to let the opposite guy go. in order that they gave me an attempt and technically speaking I’ve been unproved ever since.”

His longevity is matched – and indeed pipped – by Peter Gilham who has been doing an equivalent job at Griffin Park since 11 October 1969 when, by coincidence, Keegan’s old club Scunthorpe were the visitors. Like Sephton, he has become a club institution and incredibly, Gilham has missed just two games in those 50 years. the primary was in January 2006, when Brentford beat Sunderland – who were within the Premier League at the time – within the third round of the FA Cup.

The other was a rearranged midweek game against Colchester United. “I had already booked a vacation so was caught out,” Gilham says. “By chance, i used to be watching Soccer AM and Helen Chamberlain said she had always wanted to be a PA announcer at a football ground so I contacted her and she or he jumped at the prospect . But to her chagrin the sport was called off at half time due to a frozen pitch, but a minimum of it meant I hadn’t missed a game!”