After I let it slip out this morning that I had been on Newcastle United’s books in the relegation season of 1960-1961, while still at school, and played that season with Bobby Moncur and David Craig, I’ve been asked to come clean on my bio. 😀
Many readers have asked for an expanded bio – so we’ve put it up on the site on the right hand side for a couple of days.
As most of you know we’ve been running the Newcastle United Blog since last April, and our goal for the blog is to give a responsible platform to Newcastle United fans all over the world – to express their views on the Newcastle United news of the day.
Hopefully we’ll have some impact on growing the fan base for the club in the coming seasons, which we still expect the club to be very successful, even given the travails of this season.
So far on our site we’ve had 3.45M hits (is that good? – not really sure), we’ve written 2,470 stories and had 67,7212 comments from our readers – in just under 11 months.
The one big problem we’ve had on the site is keeping the language fairly decent – and we’ve had some complaints from readers about this in the past. This continues to be our biggest problem, quite honestly.
So here’s a plug – please try to keep the language decent, because we want this site to be accessible by the young Newcastle United fans of the future – one is shown above with James Milner.Â Do you notice how they have the same haircuts? Â 😀
When we started last year we were also accused of not having any connection to Newcastle, although those messages have diminished in the last several months.
I said I was born and bred in Newcastle and proud of it – so for those of our readers who have questioned my Newcastle heritage, here is an expanded version of my bio.
Dr. Ed Harrison is a recently retired IBM Consulting Group Executive who now has time, lots of time, to write about his lifelong passion – Newcastle United Football Club.
Ed was born and bred in Newcastle and watched his first game at St. James’ Park in 1949 as a 4 year-old with his Mother and Father. He was told to look out for number 9 – Jackie Milburn – Wor Jackie.
In football terms Ed was a goalkeeper and played for Warrier Street School and Newcastle Minors (Under-11), in 1956 and went on to play for Newcastle schoolboys and Northumberland schoolboys (Under 15) in 1959.
Ed was also an England Schoolboy Trailist that year, and in January 1960 played a full game at Highbury, in a trial for Arsenal.
He was at Newcastle United for a couple of years from 1960 as an amateur, and played with Bob Moncur, David Craig for the Newcastle Juniors side (Newcastle N’s in those days) that season 1960-1961 which of course saw Newcastle relegated (it wasn’t my fault – honest)..
He attended Heaton Technical and Manor Park schools and then went on to study at both King’s College, London (BSc) and Newcastle Universities (PhD). He played for Newcastle Universities and England Universities from 1967 until 1970 and in the English team Steve Heighway was probably the best known player he played with at that time.
The Newcastle University side of 1967-1969 was probably one of the strongest ever and the team reached the UAU finals twice, getting beaten by Swansea in 1968 and then drawing with Loughborough Colleges the following year. Alan Brown and Stan Calvert were the Newcastle University coaches in those days.
In local football the Newcastle University team reached the final of the Norhumberland Senior Cup in 1968, after beating Ashington at Ashington in the semi-finals. I cannot remember the score (think it was 1-0) but we had drawn 0-0 at Cochrane Park and we were told Ashington would kill us at their place. 😀 So you can understand our interest in this cup and following the Newcastle Reserves progress this season. We see Blyth Spartans are again in the final.
Newcastle University was well beaten in the Northumberland Senior Cup Final Final at St. James’ Park by Blyth Spartans (3-0?) in April of 1968, but we had several of our best players missing because the final was between terms. That was always a problem with the University football team, because we only had our best players during the terms.
Ed had a very serious double fracture (fibia and tibia broken right through) of his left leg at Sheffield Wednesday’s Hillsborough stadium when playing for England Universities against the England Amateur side in April, 1969. That was effectively it as far as his University football was concerned as he was out of action for 10 months.
But it did have some positive impact on his studies since it allowed him to concentrate more on what he was really at Newcastle University for – as his tutor Dr. Scoins kept telling him – and that was to work towards a PhD. Ed got his Doctorate in Computer Science from Newcastle University just a few months after he joined IBM in 1970.
Within a short 3 years Ed was moved by IBM to the USA, where he remains today with his Geordie wife, Madeline, daughter Elaine and twin boys, Paul and Neil. His three kids are now all in their early thirties. One of his sons, Neil, continues the tradition of Newcastle support in the family, and is an avid Newcastle United fan, very depressed with our current position in the league. 🙁
Ed lives just outside Raleigh, NC and remains an exiled Geordie, fully committed to the cause.
If anybody reads the blog who we knew back then – we’d love to hear from you – you can contact us here.