Alnwick parishes set to resume historic rivalry in Shrove Tuesday football match

The historic Shrove Tuesday football match in Alnwick is set to return.

Thursday, 24th February 2022, 11:00 am

The match between the parishes of St Michael’s and St Paul’s had to be cancelled last year due to Covid-19.

But the friendly rivalry will resume on The Pastures in the shadow of Alnwick Castle on Tuesday, March 1.

Committee secretary Archie Jenkins said: “The committee held a historic zoom meeting in January 2021 when the inevitable decision to cancel the 2021 match was made.

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Goalmouth action from the 2020 match.

"A good turn out at the planning meeting one month ago had no doubt in resuming this year’s game. The Duke of Northumberland’s availability was also announced early in December.

"The committee are enthusiastic to continue the tradition of being one of five Shrove Tuesday games still played in England.”

The match was first recorded in 1762 and this will be the 192nd game played in the Pastures since 1828.

There have been 38 cancellations since then due to war, bereavements, fall-outs, foot-and-mouth disease and bad weather.

The original game was played through the town’s streets between the unmarried and married freemen.

The Duke of Northumberland will drop the ball from the Castle Barbican at 2pm to start proceedings.

As is customary, Lee Pattinson the winning hale scorer for St Michael’s in 2020 when they secured a 2-0 victory, will kick off.

The game has only a few rules with the goals decorated with greenery and standing about 400 yards apart.

Dozens of people are expected to take part in what are likely to be saturated conditions.