One of my series around East Belfast celebrating local history/culture etc.
Caches in the series are:
The Other Side of East Belfast GC5QVE1
A nod to George GC5QXDC
Ty-Isa (The Wardrobe) GC5QXMF
The Strand Cinema GC5QYFE
Church Micro IE 137 Belmont Presbyterian GC5QZ2G
Belmont Tower GC5NZVB
The Searcher GC5QZ1N
The Birth of a Writer GC5QXWM
Church Micro IE 138 St Colmcille’s GC5QZ3X
Church Micro IE 139 Kirkpatrick Memorial, Belfast GC5QZ67
Down in the Hollow GC5QXAM
This cache is placed at 'The Oval' as 'A nod to George' Best, a local lad who became a much celebrated footballing hero.
More information and a George Best trail is available via http://www.communitygreenway.co.uk/trails
Football is part of the lifeblood of Belfast, particularly in its working class areas. The city supports 31 Association Football Clubs, most of which are, like local club Glentoran, semi professional.
George’s dad, Dickie, played football when he was young and was spotted by a scout for local team Glentoran. He signed for Cliftonville for a while and continued to play in various leagues right up until he was thirty seven.
Interestingly, Glentoran was the first club to notice George’s talent, but they dismissed him on the basis that he was too light, too weak and too small to be a footballer. Manchester United’s local scout, Bob Bishop, made a very different assessment of his talent and soon the young George was off to Manchester to start his career.
Glentoran Football Club has a history that goes back to 1882, and the Oval on Mersey Street has been their home ground since 1892. George’s paternal grandfather, James ‘Scottie’ Best, lived nearby. As a young boy, George was a keen ‘Glens’ supporter and he came here to watch them play almost every week with his father or grandfather. Many former Glentoran players such as Danny Blanchflower, Peter Doherty, Billy Bingham, Jimmy McIlroy and Terry Conroy have gone on to play for teams in England and Scotland. www.glentoran.com
The cache is place with kind permission of the club secretary, who is happy for cachers to come inside and have a look around if the gates are open and there is a car in the car park. He really enjoyed hearing about geocaching and may yet take it up!