The historic day Hucknall football will never forget

VILLA PARK HERE WE COME! -- Hucknall Town fans in party mood before the 2005 FA Trophy final.
VILLA PARK HERE WE COME! -- Hucknall Town fans in party mood before the 2005 FA Trophy final.

This year marks the tenth anniversary of the most memorable day in the history of Hucknall football.

A day that provided a classic example of how a non-league club can raise the spirits and galvanise a local community. And one that deserves to be recalled when the latest Non-League Day is celebrated this coming Saturday (SEE ABOVE).

Hucknall Town’s appearance in the FA Trophy final of 2005 was the culmination of many years of meteoric progress by a club founded in a corner of the old Hucknall and Linby Miners Welfare.

It was bad luck that the final, against Essex rivals, Grays Athletic, coincided with a year in which the normal venue, Wembley, was closed down for its rebuild. But that didn’t worry almost 5,000 fans who flocked to Villa Park in support of The Yellows.

Attired in Town shirts, hats and scarves and armed with flags, banners and giant hands, they marched on Birmingham to revel in an occasion that united the town. Thousands more watched the Sunday-lunchtime game live on Sky Sports TV.

Dean Barrick’s side were the underdogs -- even more so when the player/manager himself was carried off on a stretcher with a broken leg. But after going a goal down, they battled back to equalise through star striker Danny Bacon.

Nervewrackingly, the match went to extra-time and penalties. Heartbreakingly, Town lost the shootout. But what a day!