Rough Guide: Opposition
Rough Guide: Club History
Rough Guide: Boston
Rough Guide: Who's Who
Classic Service Stations
Inept Defending Of Our Time
My (Bankrupt) FC
Sites we like
Rough Guide to.... the picturesque, drug-free Lincolnshire market town of Boston
One of the few benefits of following a football team as shit as Boston United is that such an inexplicable loyalty to an obscure football club languishing in the depths of the English football pyramid affords all those mental enough to do so an excuse to travel to exciting new places, meet new people, experience new towns and stadiums; you can try all manner of locally sourced cuisine and local beers in the comfortable and hospitable surrounds of good old fashioned rural, working class England. And, obviously, watch some good football.
Well, that’s the theory.
The reality is inevitably somewhat different. If you travel away by car, you can't get pissed. There's one motivating factor for lugging your fat arse to some remote pothole in Cumbria gone straight away. You could always go by bus, but as we'll see, this is never a good idea. And when you arrive, you'll find the club sold its town centre ground to Hillards in 1985 and has long since relocated to a portacabin on a windswept industrial estate on the fringes of civilisation. So your locally sourced refreshments will most likely consist of a packet of Quavers and a flat pint of Carling from the clubhouse while a boss-eyed nutfuck wearing the kind of coat only sex criminals and drug dealers would be seen alive in eyes you up menacingly from behind a fruit machine so old it dispenses shillings.
But it doesn't have to be this way, which is why impsTALK has taken time out of its very, very busy schedule of watching
Here's a clue. It's not Mike.
NASA’s probe sailed past Mars years ago. It has already zipped through Jupiter's back yard. But Mike, at this precise moment, is still sat in a traffic jam down Sleaford Road wondering what’s causing the hold up. He's going to be there for quite some time.Bostonians are already acutely aware that they can drive from Leeds, Nottingham, Sheffield, Bangkok, Lima, Perth - or any other local city - and find that their journey time is doubled merely by attempting to circumnavigate Liquorpond Street. Without such intimate local knowledge, it's little surprise that visiting fans are frequently caught out on their trips to Boston when they fail to allow three hours for the last 500 metres down John Adams Way, the dual carriageway that neatly bisects the town centre and is somehow expected to cope with the amount of mentalists who are trying to go to Skegness for a day out in the middle of December.
But that last little trek to the ground is actually the least of your worries, because merely getting to the outer fringes Boston can be a tortuous task in itself. Lincolnshire's roads have been explicitly designed to kill as many people as possible through an innovative combination of temptingly flat, arrow-straight stretches of asphalt, a dearth of dual carriageways and line upon line upon line of slow moving agricultural traffic. Add into the mix an above average number of twatty boy racers in shit cars that have been desperately plastered with Max Power stickers to make them look even more shit and it starts to look like Lincolnshire's transport network was in fact designed by a genocidal maniac.
Most people will approach Boston along the A52, which is the road connecting Boston with civilisation and, further along, Nottingham. The A52 is a lethal road, clogged by caravans, combine harvesters, motorbikes, nutters in tractors and Skegness-bound coach trips. Designed to simply prevent you getting to where you want to go, the road is almost entirely single carriageway in Lincolnshire, meaning it's inevitable you will at some point be stuck behind a lorry or some other slow moving vehicle. On impsTALK's most recent trip, for example, we found ourselves behind a mobile crane, two caravans, a water tanker (a water tanker? I mean, come on) and - and this is the best bit - a HOUSE on a lorry. Not a mobile caravan. A big wooden house.
If you survive the A52 and don't suffer an aneurysm through sheer frustration, you will eventually reach the outskirts of Boston. Or best advice is to simply ditch your car at this point and hike the remainder of the journey on foot. It’ll be quicker, cheaper and you won’t have your tyres slashed.
Parking at the ground is permit only, so don't try it. Bung your car on one of the residential roads around the ground, preferably blocking someone in their driveway for two full hours of their miserable fucking life.
This is perhaps one of the more desperate rail journeys in the world. Operated by East Midlands Trains, the service runs along a section of track plagued so badly by metal fatigue that an attempt to run an actual train along it (i.e not one of the green square things) resulted in the rails simply falling to pieces.
The lack of investment in basic infrastructure - and we're guessing rails are pretty important to trains - tells you everything you need to know about this particular service. Essentially, if a green square thing were to fly off a section of cracked rail and submerge itself in a drain, there's not going to be the same kind post-Hatfield wailing and gnashing of teeth.
the time of writing, the trains depart from platform two at Nottingham
station. Platform two is located as far from the main building as it is
possible to go, and it's only when you arrive to catch the train that
you realise why. Put in simple terms, the
passengers are the kind of people who think a holiday in Skegness is an
acceptable way to spend their leisure time. And they don't own cars. The
sort of people, in other words, who want to go to Skegness and - get this!
- who do not own a caravan. You may have thought
this was impossible, but there, on platform two, it is an every day fact
Useful links: East Midlands Trains - timetable
Built in 702BC or something daft like that, the Stump resembles some kind of medieval skyscraper that towers over not just the town of Boston but the surrounding twenty miles.
Although it is no longer possible to climb to the very top of the tower, the balcony half way up is of sufficient height to attract the kind of suicidal depressive who can’t be bothered to drive the ten miles to Tattershall Castle for the more picturesque ‘head-first death plunge into the two-foot deep moat’ finale. If the unfortunate jumper happens to land on the grass bank of the Witham, they tend to leave a human-shaped dent that becomes a ghoulish attraction for local school kids. And impsTALK.
If, however, you'd just rather hold off the death dive until you've at least witnessed Boston v Burscough, you can climb up to the balcony for a couple of quid to enjoy the view. They say on a clear day you can see Denmark. Although they might have said Lincoln.
Links: Parish of Boston
You'll be immediately struck by the desolation. The silence is stunning. It is almost as if you have arrived at the end of the world. And in many ways, you have.
Welcome to the coast
The sea itself will be a barely visible glint far away on the distant horizon. Should you attempt to try and walk to it, one of two things will happen. You will either get caught out by the tide and drown, or you will stumble into a huge pit of quicksand and bombed by the RAF as you flash your torch for help.
Still, on a brighter note there are, apparently, ample opportunities to watch animals with wings flying about. Some of them are presumably 'rare' and 'endangered', if that’s the kind of thing that gets you going.
Spend any length of time in Boston and you’ll be struck by the number of RAF jets buzzing overhead. It’s a plane spotter’s paradise, and should you so wish there are ample opportunities to spy on the latest military aviation technology at RAF Coningsby. Which isn’t far from Tattershall castle if you then fancy topping yourself. And when we say ‘latest’ we really do mean it.
A few years ago, for example, Boston was shaken by what sounded like a huge explosion. The blast roared around the town, rattling window panes, causing townsfolk to flinch and family pets to mess the carpet. The cause was a mystery. There were no reports of a fire. No planned blasting. And Tony Crane was twinkle toed Owls academy player. Wasn’t him. There was only one logical explanation. It must have been a sonic boom caused by an RAF jet.
“Er, what sonic boom?” an RAF spokesman said when questioned. “No idea what you’re talking about.”
“Are you sure it wasn’t anything to do with the plane that looked suspiciously like a top secret Eurofighter flying about?” Bostonians asked, this being the time the jet was shrouded in secrecy.
“Eurowhatyousaynow?” replied the RAF. “Probably just a weather balloon. A cloud, even.”
Unconvincing. Not that the locals cared much. Bear in mind that this is the county where a random old bloke thought a Tornado flying over his house ‘sounded funny’, so he called RAF Waddington to tell them the plane was kaput. When the RAF engineers stopped laughing at him, he convinced them to at least look at the jet. When they examined the engine, the RAF discovered a fault with a turbine blade so serious that the jet was in imminent danger of dropping from the sky with the vertical grace of a Paul Ellender clearance. Bonkers.
As Boston is billed as a 'historical market town', you do not need to be a fucking genius to figure out it has a market.
Quite why people are bussed in on Wednesdays and Saturdays to browse stall after stall of knock off DVDs and shit clothes you wouldn't dress a dead dog in is beyond the comprehension of most people, but whatever. It's there. And if you really do insist on handing some illiterate freak a quid for an illegal version of The Best Of Motown then good for you.
By which we mean, in some you will die. In others, you may live. Basically, it's a lottery - and since the people behind this website fled the town years ago we're taking no responsibility for directing you to the right establishment. For all we know, the below recommendations could have all turned into hang-outs for paedophiles by now. If so, be sure to let us know! As in, just so we can update this section. Not because we like kids. I mean, we love kids. Just not.... er.... anyway....
Handily placed just two minutes from the railway station, and highly recommended by impsTALK, a good place to start would be The Eagle. It's part of the Tynemill chain, so a decent selection of well kept real ales is assured.
Tavern (Custom House Lane, Boston, PE21 6HH) is across John
Adams Way, a five minute walk from the ground and keeps a decent pint
you could just pop into the Sportsbar. Having undergone a recent refit by the club, it actually has windows now. And proper beer.
It's generally welcoming to away fans, given that it is home to
the hardcore United fans, most of whom are well into their second century
and have long since given up feeling any kind of antipathy to visiting
supporters given they are extremely grateful to simply still be alive. Bask in the love.
Skegness is perhaps best summed up by its pier, a pitiful structure mortally wounded in a storm years ago and yet never repaired. It barely reaches the beach, let alone the sea, poking half-heartedly from land with an almost apologetic shrugging-of-the-shoulders; a shameless statement of hopeless underachievement. That's Skeggy.
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