Ely City celebrate reaching the first round proper of the FA Cup 60 years on at the Unwin Ground

Mayor of Ely, Cllr Ian Lindsay, Bruce King, Ely City chairman, Robert Button and Cllr Richard Hobbs

Mayor of Ely, Cllr Ian Lindsay, Bruce King, Ely City chairman, Robert Button and Cllr Richard Hobbs hand over the match ball to the referee. Photo: Mike Rouse - Credit: Archant

1956: the year that Manchester United become the first English side to compete in the European Cup, the year the RAF retired the last Lancaster bomber - and the year Ely City had their finest hour in the FA Cup.

Elaine and Bruce King, son of former player/coach George King. Photo: Mike Rouse

Elaine and Bruce King, son of former player/coach George King. Photo: Mike Rouse - Credit: Archant

And 60 years on, the club celebrated its most successful cup run to date before Brady Stone’s men met with Stanway Rovers in the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division.

Although the Robins were beaten 6-2 by Torquay all those years ago in the first round of the competition, the club looked back at the thrilling contest with a display of memorabilia, including match programmes and newspaper clippings, and welcomed relatives of former players and committee members.

Almost 4,000 fans flocked to the Paradise Ground six decades ago to watch player/manager George King and his men take on the now-Football League side, and hundreds turned out to cheer on the current crop of Ely talents, who drew 1-1 with high-flying Stanway.

East Cambridgeshire and Ely City Councillor, Mike Rouse, said: “It was a really nice event at the Unwin.

Cllr Ian Lindsay with Ian Newstead, son-in-law of former player Terry Flatt, and his daughter. Photo

Cllr Ian Lindsay with Ian Newstead, son-in-law of former player Terry Flatt, and his daughter. Photo: Mike Rouse - Credit: Archant


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“Although Ely lost 6-2 all those years ago, it remains one of the greatest days in the club’s long history.

“My uncle, Doug Unwin, was the chairman at the time, and he was the proudest man in England!”

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