Stamford AFC’s number one fan is celebrating after chalking up 400 consecutive games of watching his beloved club.
Stamford superfan Giles ‘Stampy’ Lawrence closed the season on a total 405 consecutive games supporting the Daniels, a run that dates back to August 2007 - a game at Lincoln United, where the team were beaten 4-0.
Giles, who is affectionately known as Stampy due to his job as a machine operator at the Royal Mail in Peterborough, began his love affair with the club after a colleague suggested he watch a game as a match involving Northampton Town was called off.
The 42-year-old soon got the bug for the Daniels and switched his allegiance to the Kettering Road club. And Giles’ commitment goes much further than just cheering on the team from the terraces. As well as editing the club’s website, he regularly takes players to games alongside the team kit, and is the assistant manager of the Under 14s. He was given the perfect reward for reaching his milestone, as the youngsters he coaches won this year’s Hereward League Cup.
Giles said: “I’m very proud to have reached 400 games, even though sometimes I think I may need my head looking at.
“It is the sheer enjoyment of going to a non-league game, and I find the opposition fans a lot friendlier than league fans.
“The highlight of the 400 games was probably the play-off final last year, when we beat Chasetown to gain promotion to the Premier Division of the Northern Premier League, and the low was probably when we were relegated in my first season. At least I got that out of the way early on.
“I have thought about not going one day a few times. Especially when, like last season, you’re standing watching the team lose 6-1 to Worksop and it is absolutely hammering it down with rain. I was stood there with shoes full of water thinking ‘why do I do this?’ But I love going and I love the club, which is why I keep doing it.”