A rough guide to... Weymouth

Cod Almighty | Article

by Rich Mills

24 August 2021

Our return to the conference brings new opponents and new places to visit. The first of these are Weymouth FC, who visit Blundell Park on Saturday. Cue Rich Mills.

How are you?

Weymouth FC are known as the Terras – a reference to their terracotta coloured home shirts, which is possibly one of the most middle class nicknames I've ever heard of. Their current shirt looks more like a West Ham shirt than an old plant pot but maybe their kit was a different colour at some point.

To my mind, they've missed an opportunity to rename themselves the Dinosaurs, or maybe the Fossils as a nod to the local Jurassic Coast. Imagine a club shop full of palaeontologists' hammers and plastic stegosauruses instead of match-worn socks and pillow cases emblazoned with the club crest. But it's not only about the marketing possibilities; just think of the fun journalists could have with it – a rock solid midfield or a defence petrified of someone or other. I'd love to see them change their name. In fact I'd heartily endorse it, which is very funny because they're in Dorset. Chortle.

Long time, no see!

Oh, no, sorry, I mistook you for someone else. Come to think of it, who the hell are you anyway? Town and the Terras have no shared history or grudges. Nothing. Barely any former players in common and not even a cup upset to be narked about, let alone a reason to smash up a pub or sing about a serial killer, and so if you're that way inclined then stay at home and let everyone else enjoy a nice day out at the seaside. Don't be a Dorset Knob.

Wait a minute, I've found one – Ahkeem Rose, (possibly) brother of former Town peno specialist Mitch and current unwanted Christmas present Danny, has found his way to Weymouth and will no doubt have a point to prove when the Mariners drop by for a kickabout.

Since leaving Town, young Ahkeem had a spell at Dover which was cut short, not by injury but by the Veras (another obvious nickname change) deciding they couldn't be arsed to complete the season, officially due to Covid affected finances but more than likely because they were fed up of losing so often. Rose will likely be the quickest thing to appear at the Bob Lucas Stadium since the days of speedway and greyhound racing in the mid-1980s. The Greyhounds of course would be another great nickname except that Streatham Rovers have dibs on it.

How are you feeling?

There was no relegation from the Conference last season but Weymouth didn’t need that safety net. Like Kings Lynn, they upset a fair few teams during the season and would have stayed up comfortably. I reckon they'll be fine again this season as they're still a bit of a surprise package.

Weymouth's fans – their supporters' club mascot is Ivan the Terra-Bull – are a fairly cheerful lot who don't seem to want for much in life other than bragging rights over local rivals Dorchester Town and Yeovil. They're proud of their team and, like Town's fans, don't mind dipping in their pockets to help out their club out, having raised £35k in 2020 in order to ensure Covid safety for the Conference South playoffs.

Where are you from?

Weymouth, and indeed Dorset, is bloody lovely and I'd recommend making a weekend or even a week of the away fixture in April. Maybe a caravan in West Bay (where ITV filmed some Broadchurch scenes) or one of the many other parks nearby. Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door are just wonderful; as is Portland Bill.

There's a white horse cut into the hills just up the road at Osmington which is well worth a look and of course you shouldn't forget to check out the Tank Museum which is superb for anyone who, er, loves tanks. It’s right next door to Monkey World which is full of all sorts of apes and monkeys, natch.

Weymouth itself is a great place for a visit, all year round. A seaside town which manages to be simultaneously quaint, tired and hip. Hire a pedalo on the beach and drift aimlessly on the tide while watching the world pass slowly by. I can't recommend it enough.

You must be so tired of the Black Death

Yep, back in the 14th century the plague entered Britain via a sailor carrying the disease who slept at the harbour before heading to Dorchester. Forget the dinosaurs and fossils, the Plague Rats would be a nickname which would make folks sit up and take notice of your team.

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