For over 50 years our stadium ‘ White Hart Lane’ has always been close to my heart. I had 10 years there as a player and many years up to the present day, as a match day host. When I joined Spurs in 1958 and saw the stadium for the first time it took my breath away. I had come up from South Wales having spent my early years playing for my local club Swansea Town. Their home pitch was the ‘ Vetch Field ‘ a compact stadium nestled behind Swansea prison and growing up it was my lifes ambition to play there. When I signed for Swansea and achieved my dream I thought the ‘ Vetch ‘ could never be matched, but then as I walked through iron gates at the entrance to WHL, I realised this was at a different level. Everything was bigger, better and the pitch itself was fantastic. Of course in those days all pitches were good for the first few months of the season, until conditions turned them into mud and sand, but despite that, somehow during our Glory Years we managed to play the brand of football that saw record crowds at the Lane, win trophies and forge memories never to be forgotten. When I played, apart from the pre season, which was at the Cheshunt training ground, we went to WHL every day to train. There was an indoor concrete pitch which you did not want to go down on and Dave Mackay was to be avoided at all costs, as he trained the way he played and made no allowances for teammates!
We utilised the whole ground, lapping around the pitch and running up the stairs on the stands. Bill Nick was always there, first in and last out, his life was Tottenham, as a player then manager and I doubt any one man has devoted as much of his life to a club as Bill.
The new stadium will be fantastic. I have had the privilege of attending several presentations of the stadium, which together with our new training facility at ‘ Hotspur Way ‘ will be the best in the land. I look forward to its opening and hope it will help us continue the progress we have made with our current manager and team and they too can win trophies and make lasting memories, for themselves, but more importantly our passionate Tottenham fans.