Take a look behind-the-scenes at AFC Fylde, through the microphone of match day stadium announcer, Brian Porter.
288 Games & Rising!
I have been kindly offered 400 words to tell my story as stadium announcer at AFC Fylde. Those of you who know me will understand when I say 400 words barely gets me started, so here are 606!
It all started in 2007 when I stood in for Eric Picton as temporary announcer for the FA Vase game Round 4, a 3-0 win against Studley.
To be at Wembley that day as a guest of the club and to see Matt Walwyn become the youngest player to score twice at Wembley is something I will never forget. Nor will I forget ringing Radio Lancashire from the team hotel to tell them he was doing his A Level biology revision.
Mick Horsfall was another hero that day. He’d been injured and although everyone was desperate to see him play, Mick Fuller took the difficult decision not to risk him. Mick was still an integral part of the club though and kept everyone in high spirits. None more so than when Mick Fuller told the lads to go and get their ties on. Horse appeared two minutes later wearing his tie – only his tie!
As well as winning the FA VASE in 2008, we were promoted to North West Counties Premier Division.
Other games that stand out are obviously having the privilege of announcing at Wembley stadium twice in a week in 2019. As a player you want to play there. As an announcer it doesn’t get any better. If you saw me from the stands on either occasion and thought I was milking it, you’d be right.
At the end of 2009 we were promoted again. It came down to a “winner takes all” showdown with New Mills. A simple scenario: winner goes up. 5-0 later and the party started.
At the end of two seasons in the North West Premier I announced promotion number three, after Ben Hinchliffe’s penalty broke the Ashton United hearts and almost the net!
Other games that stand out have been drab games where I had great fun with the crowd. One was against FC United of Manchester. It was pouring with rain the referee got injured. While the replacement was getting ready I wandered onto the pitch with David Haythornthwaite telling me: “Careful Brian, you’ve got 500 soaked Mancs there. Don’t wind them up!” Anyway, they enjoyed my version of “Singing in The rain” and later chanted, “Tannoy, Tannoy give us a song.”
In a game against Nantwich Town one horrible wet Tuesday, there were 16 from our visitors and they sang all night as their team went down 4-1. I gave those 16 the Man of The Match award. Little did anyone know there was a mystery shopper from the league there that night and yours truly came in for praise.
I wasn’t there for Matt Blinkhorn’s header to equalise again Kidderminster in the 97th minute but I have seen the photo. I can assure you that had I been there you would have heard the goal announcement from somewhere in the pile of people.
The win at Boston secured our place in The National League, promotion number five that I’ve had the honour of presiding over.
Occasionally I get it wrong, but I can’t take the credit for NE14 ABJ! That was my friend Liam who stood in when I couldn’t stand due to a broken back. That, and two mental breakdowns, have prevented me reaching 300 games.
At some point next season I will achieve that milestone if you’ll still have me.
I’ll close by thanking all of our supporters for supporting me.
COME ON BOYS!