We’re On Our Way!

Mexican knowledge

Stanley Lewis:
I didn’t know a thing… Didn’t do any research.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
I really didn’t know much about that part of the world – only through Geography at school. I think the only thing I knew about Mexico was Acapulco!
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
I did know something of South America as I studied the continent for my geography GCE. But I didn’t do any research about Mexico. All I knew was that they drank tequila and wore sombreros.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
I was always in and out of Lewisham library so I might have looked up a bit about Mexico. But that was about it.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
Of course now, I would have studied the country a little more and done more homework.

Staying Healthy and Safe

Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
I can’t remember what inoculations we had. Not even sure that we had any at all. But I had to carry insulin and needles because I had been diagnosed in 1966 as diabetic. I was used to it by then.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
I recall I had to have a vaccination. Smallpox? I remember going to the doctor anyway.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
I don’t recall having any inoculations.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
We were given a pamphlet by the England Football Supporters Association, which advised us on what to take and wear for the trip, and the medical side. I seem to remember it was pretty comprehensive. They told us things like when you want to buy things in the markets, don’t ever pay what they’re asking but haggle. All that sort of information was well supplied. It was very professionally done.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
Can’t remember what advice – if any – we were given on what to take with us. Don’t forget, we weren’t part of the namby-pamby generation! And certainly I don’t think crime was expected to be a problem out there.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
I got some travellers cheques.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
We took a guess at what money we would need out there. Can’t remember how much we took but, looking back, we probably didn’t take enough. There were no cash machines then, of course. So we were taking cash. Probably had some traveller’s cheques as well. There were no safe or anything in our motel rooms though. They still had exchange-control at that time. I suppose the Government didn’t want sterling going out of the country. I seem to remember there were balance-of-payment problems. But they changed that for the World Cup – to allow people to take more money with them.

Packing…

Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
I travelled light. I did my packing the night before. It’s always part of the excitement, isn’t it?
Stanley Lewis:
I took as little as possible. Shorts, shirts. That kind of thing.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
The day before I just stuck a few things in a case. I took the minimum of luggage. A few T-shirts etc…Probably wore the same shirt five days running, if you wore the shirt at all. It was very basic. You didn’t worry about fashion or anything like that.  
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
I think I only took one suitcase. It was a case from my army days, which I’d, brought home from Germany. I was never really one for wearing shorts. But I bought some thin trousers – cotton ones. Everyone travelled light. I also took a camera I’d bought out in Germany in the army – bought it from the NAFFI. It was a Dacora Digna. They were cheaper out there. I didn’t take all that many pictures though. You were more careful then about what pictures you took. In was film then – not digital.

The Night Before Departure…

Stanley Lewis:
It was just an ordinary day really. Like – “We’re going away. We’re going to Mexico.” That was it.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
I was sensible enough to have a fairly quiet night the night before we left. I know it’s a hackneyed phrase – but it was going to be the trip of a lifetime. We just couldn’t believe we were going. I had two good friends with me. We literally were a ‘family’ on the trip.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
I didn’t do anything in particular the night before but I was certainly filled with excitement and anticipation.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
Everyone was worked-up with the thought of going out there and winning again.

To The Airport…

Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
We flew out on 30th of May.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
We flew out on May 30th. It was a Saturday if I remember rightly.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
We flew out on May 30th
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
I went to Surrey Docks tube station, up to Whitechapel and got a District Line round to Victoria. I recall getting a coach from Victoria Coach Station and going to Stansted, which was a small airport at that time.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
Our trip started from Victoria Coach Station, going to Stansted Airport. Stansted had only just come on the map as an airport then. I don’t think it was that big though.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
My brother took us to the airport by car from Cheltenham to Stansted Airport. The excitement started coming to a head as soon as we got in the car. I can’t remember the weather. It was certainly dry

… And Away We Go!

Alan Mullery profile
Alan Mullery:
I flew to Mexico thinking, Nobby’s (Stiles) not going to take my place… Colin Bell’s not going to take my place. It’s mine. I’m number one and that’s where I’m going to stay until we win the World Cup.
When we arrived in Mexico, we were driven to a comfortable low-rise hotel on the outskirts of Mexico City. The hotel was in a very wealthy suburb of the city with beautiful properties all around. Alf allowed us a few days to relax and get used to the altitude and temperatures before we started training in earnest.

CLICK HERE ⇒

Peter profile
Peter Logan:
The flight went off about lunchtime. Maybe 2 o’clock – something like that.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
My brother later told me – on our return from Mexico – that when he got home he had seen us on television walking out across the tarmac to the plane at Stansted Airport.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
I think it was Dan Air we flew by. Couldn’t swear to it.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
The plane was a Boeing 707 owned, I think by a Dutch charter company.
Stanley Lewis:
I think we flew from Gatwick – and there was two jets. Lufthansa I think. German. Anyway, the first one took off and we was on the second one. When we landed at the other end we met up with some others and we told them we had films, stewardess service and everything. Well, they had some old plane. They had nothing.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
I think we travelled out on a German airline.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
As far as I remember, it was all England fans on board.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
Our plane was pretty well all England fans.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
Two of the passengers on board were Kenneth Wolstenholme, the BBC commentator, and Bobby Moore’s wife, Tina.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
Also on the plane were Tina Moore, Mrs. Hurst and, I think, Mrs. Peters.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
Of the wives who went out Mrs Moore would have been the only one I would have recognised. I don’t think most of the wives went. Alf wouldn’t have allowed them to stay. It wouldn’t have been a wags-tail, that’s for sure.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
We stopped off at, I’m pretty sure, Gander, Newfoundland to refuel.
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
We went via Gander, Newfoundland where we had a short stop over to refuel. It was dark when we got there. We’d assumed we were going straight to Mexico. We were there for a couple of hours perhaps while they re-fuelled.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
We didn’t have a long stopover in Bangor Maine in North America. It was only a two-hour stop. Don’t know the reason for it. Re-fuelling I suppose. We then flew from Maine to Guadalajara
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
In all it was about a 14-hour flight with stopover. Probably about the same as today actually – or not far off it.
Jasper profile
Jasper Cook:
All in all, it was a fairly low-key flight. I don’t remember any excessive drinking or anything.
Patrick profile
Patrick Burke:
One incident stands out in my mind on that flight. The chap in front of me opened a bottle of gin shortly after leaving England. By the time we got to the USA he was well asleep. We were flying over Texas when the pilot announced that passengers on the right hand side should be able to see beneath them the city of Houston. At this juncture the fan woke up with a jerk and hollered “Euston? What the hell are we doing over Euston?”
Peter profile
Peter Logan:
During the flight I can remember the pilot announcing that we were flying over New York or somewhere. Pretty sure it was New York though – but it was too dark and cloudy to see lights or anything.
Stanley Lewis:
We landed in New Orleans for re-fuel – about an hour. While we were waiting to re-board we saw this motorcycle cop by the perimeter fence of the airport. So, we went over and said, “Hello mate!” And he says, “Get back in that fuckin’ hanger. Don’t you stand here.” We’re a bit taken-aback. And we say, “Oh alright, mate!” It was our first taste of America. And we thought, ‘Oh blimey! What a welcome!’ End of Chapter - Mexico70 Sombrero
 
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