Jump to content

Welcome to One Team in Bristol - Bristol City Forums

Welcome to One Team in Bristol - Bristol City Forums, like most online communities you must register to view or post in our community, but don't worry this is a simple free process that requires minimal information for you to signup. Be a part of One Team in Bristol - Bristol City Forums by signing in or creating an account.

  • Start new topics and reply to others
  • Full access to all forums (not all viewable as guest)
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get email updates
  • Get your own profile page and make new friends
  • Send personal messages to other members.
  • Support OTIB with a premium membership

Blagdon Mike

John Atyeo - 25 years since passing

Recommended Posts

Friday 8th June marks 25 years since John Atyeo's untimely passing at the age of 61.

A few of us will gather round his statue at Ashton Gate at 11am on that day in appreciation of his colossal contribution to Bristol City.

Even if we simply drape our scarves around his statue, we cannot let this day go unnoticed.

You are welcome to join us ...

 

  • Like 14

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the mid 60s, when I was around ten years old, my mum took me to the Lewis's store in Broadmead where John Atyeo was to be, signing autographs. There was nobody else around when we arrived and I had the Great Man's undivided attention as he signed my scrapbooks (ask your grandparents). He seemed out of his comfort zone just being there but he was very nice and a photographer from the Evening Post took a picture of him and I together.

I've no memento of that day. I never did see the photograph in the paper and as a teenager I discovered that my dad had given away my scrapbooks to a workmate for his kid. I wasn't pleased. But nobody can take away my knowledge and memory of the day I met my hero, John Atyeo.

  • Like 15
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, Blagdon Mike said:

Friday 8th June marks 25 years since John Atyeo's untimely passing at the age of 61.

A few of us will gather round his statue at Ashton Gate at 11am on that day in appreciation of his colossal contribution to Bristol City.

Even if we simply drape our scarves around his statue, we cannot let this day go unnoticed.

You are welcome to join us ...

 

Be nice if the local press cover this too @Blagdon Mike

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

61 was a very young age to pass away.  It would have been wonderful if he had lived to see the unveiling of his statue

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Blagdon Mike said:

Friday 8th June marks 25 years since John Atyeo's untimely passing at the age of 61.

A few of us will gather round his statue at Ashton Gate at 11am on that day in appreciation of his colossal contribution to Bristol City.

Even if we simply drape our scarves around his statue, we cannot let this day go unnoticed.

You are welcome to join us ...

 

Sorry can’t be with you, but there in spirit

He gave me and others the best of City times 

Remember being allowed to stay up to listen to 9 o’clock news on radio to see if we had won promotion in an away fixture

Why worry?  Big John scored to send us up

The best of times.  Atyeo never let us down

we will never see his like again. Gentleman John will live as long as people remember City

 

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any stories about him would be greatly appreciated. Never got to see him but the regard in which he is held astounds me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was 11 years old sat in the back of my Dad’s car going up St Micheals Hill when they announced on the radio that  he’d died. That was the first time I’d heard of him. 

My Dad, who passed away himself last year, always held that 54-55 team up as the pinnacle of his time following City, and John Atyeo was the Jewell in the crown.

I was so pleased when his statue was finally erected back in 2016, because possibly only Billy Wedlock apart, he stands head and shoulders above the rest when it comes to City’s greatest players.

 

Edited by BS15_RED
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
49 minutes ago, Real Mad Red said:

25 Years, and what a young age for such a great man to die. I have very fond memories of "Mr Atyeo" as I always called him, he was very kind to me over a period of time when I went to most home games, I would walk to the ground from Hartcliffe, but could rarely afford the gate money as we had little spare cash due to my mother being widowed at a young age with 3 children to support (few of the benefits available to her then as are nowadays), I always hung around for autographs relishing the smell of liniment and the atmosphere of "real football".

I recall a game I believe against Leyton Orient (or had they temporarily changed name to Orient at that time?), John was injured I believe and was waiting outside of the old main entrance to what became the Williams Stand, he asked why I was not inside as the game was about to start, I told him the reason and he immediately gave me a ticket that he had in his pocket, after that whenever he saw me outside collecting autographs he would always take me aside and quietly ask if I had a ticket, if not he always produced one. Once John retired I really do believe that he put Brian Clark in charge of giving me a ticket (another absolute gentleman who died far too young!!!) I admit that I was so very lucky to have had such amazing contact from a man who should have been a giant oif the national team, 6 games 5 goals and probably the only reason he didn't go to Sweden for the 1958 World Cup was that he played in Johnny Haynes' position and plied his trade in the 3rd Division. RIP Big John - my hero!!!

Wonderful story, RMR

What a man. Far too young to have seen him played, but his legacy will live long in the memory for City fans, those that were lucky enough to have seen him and those that are still to come

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not much of a story about big John, but he used to bring in eggs to sell to team mates for a bit of extra money! I can’t image Premier League players doing that today 

  • Like 1
  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Many memories of the great man.Very modest,usually he would leave after matches by the back of the main stand and walk to his car parked just inside the

old car park.In fact City trained on the car park in those days,with a smallish goal at each end maybe like five aside.One day myself and a friend were watching them train and it was raining really hard and we were soaked .John pulled up in his car maybe 

Morris Traveler? and gave us a lift to Bedminster Bridge. 

Great rivalry in those days with the other Bristol great Geof Bradford 

Pity the gas couldn’t erect a decent memorial to him as well

 

 

t

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Real Mad Red said:

25 Years, and what a young age for such a great man to die. I have very fond memories of "Mr Atyeo" as I always called him, he was very kind to me over a period of time when I went to most home games, I would walk to the ground from Hartcliffe, but could rarely afford the gate money as we had little spare cash due to my mother being widowed at a young age with 3 children to support (few of the benefits available to her then as are nowadays), I always hung around for autographs relishing the smell of liniment and the atmosphere of "real football".

I recall a game I believe against Leyton Orient (or had they temporarily changed name to Orient at that time?), John was injured I believe and was waiting outside of the old main entrance to what became the Williams Stand, he asked why I was not inside as the game was about to start, I told him the reason and he immediately gave me a ticket that he had in his pocket, after that whenever he saw me outside collecting autographs he would always take me aside and quietly ask if I had a ticket, if not he always produced one. Once John retired I really do believe that he put Brian Clark in charge of giving me a ticket (another absolute gentleman who died far too young!!!) I admit that I was so very lucky to have had such amazing contact from a man who should have been a giant oif the national team, 6 games 5 goals and probably the only reason he didn't go to Sweden for the 1958 World Cup was that he played in Johnny Haynes' position and plied his trade in the 3rd Division. RIP Big John - my hero!!!

Thank you for sharing this wonderful story, it brought a tear to my eye! :sad26: God bless you big John a true legend.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good Friday 1958. City win 3-2 at Ninian Park. 

On the packed out special train coming home with the players on board. Harry Dolman signed my match programme and said I should collect £1 notes instead. But refused my request when I asked him for one. 

Back to Big John. I asked him what he thought of the referee in the previous Saturday's match at home against Sheffield United which we lost 1-4.

He replied "I don't know as I wasn't playing". I said "but you scored City's goal". (John had four disallowed for offside). 

His reply brought great hoots of laughter from his team mates. "I might have been on the pitch, but I didn't play" 

That was John Atyeo. He'd already got six England caps but willing to admit publicly to fans and team mates that he'd had an off day. He then said that his timing was off in the Sheffield U game. He'd gone too early for the crosses and the linesman was right each time. 

A giant of a man and the best I've ever seen at City. Some come close like Andy Cole but he did it for fifteen years without the respite of being subbed occasionally. And probably many times playing when not fully fit. 

I was privileged to see his first game in 1951, his last in 1966 and so many in between. Lots of goals to remember but one still stands out. A left footed screamer from 25 yards on a mud head of a pitch at Villa Park, FA Cup round five 1957. 

Thanks John. 

Edited by cidered abroad
  • Like 10

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In response to Cidered Abroad, the Big John goal that I always remember was in the Mid 60's sometime, a night match versus Derby. Reg Matthewson the ex-England man was in goal I seem to remember, he went up to collect a ball  and planted his feet on the ground with the ball clutched to his chest near to the goal line, John just shoulder barged him into the back of the net still clutching the ball, I am sure that the goal was allowed :-) Proper footballers, no quarter given none expected!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Real Mad Red said:

In response to Cidered Abroad, the Big John goal that I always remember was in the Mid 60's sometime, a night match versus Derby. Reg Matthewson the ex-England man was in goal I seem to remember, he went up to collect a ball  and planted his feet on the ground with the ball clutched to his chest near to the goal line, John just shoulder barged him into the back of the net still clutching the ball, I am sure that the goal was allowed :-) Proper footballers, no quarter given none expected!

He did the same to Rovers keeper Ron Nicholls (Gloucester cricketer and joined City in the Sixties). I think the game was 1 November 1958 at Eastville and we won 2-1. Atyeo credited with the goal at the Muller Road end plus one from Bert Tindill. I was in the Tote End with lots of City fans there. 32,104.

All data from David Woods book 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What a shame Ayteo wasn't playing in the 70s when City were in the top flight. From everything I've heard he would have graced the division. If Cheesley had avoided injury then imagine that attack, Cheesley and Ayteo, goals galore.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Today's meeting at the Atyeo Statue is noted on the Club website. 

Anyone going to it, please point out to the Club that John Atyeo was born in Standerwick in Somerset. His father was signalman on railways there. Moved to Dilton Marsh when he was very young. 

John played cricket for Somerset seconds, due to his birth place. In those days, players had to be born in a county to play cricket for that county. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For those of us unable to make it at Atyeo's statue this morning, take a moment to reflect on the legend at 11.00am  Mind you, I guess we've been reflecting on the great man all week.

I always find it incredible that he rejected so many possible big moves at the time to stay with City.

John Atyeo will always be Bristol City.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 06/06/2018 at 22:55, sglosbcfc said:

What a shame Ayteo wasn't playing in the 70s when City were in the top flight. From everything I've heard he would have graced the division. If Cheesley had avoided injury then imagine that attack, Cheesley and Ayteo, goals galore.

What a shame that he is not around now! Twenty goals a season without a big transfer fee and also a natural leader.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, cidered abroad said:

What a shame that he is not around now! Twenty goals a season without a big transfer fee and also a natural leader.

I agree with you, although in the modern game he'd be snapped up by a Premiership team very quickly. I was making reference to the fact he played nearly all his games outside the top flight. If he'd been at City in the late 70s he'd have played at the top table where his talents merited being.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I mean this with no disrespect to the staff member in the video, but why did they wheel out a random staff member to talk about John, when on his anniversary it could, and should have been someone higher up at the football club?!? :blink:

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a few of us made it to the statue and recorded the occasion.

Not one to feel good about because it marked Big John's very untimely death.

I'm glad we did it though.

  • THE BOOK IS GOING AHEAD - EVERYONE WHO PLACED A NAME ON THE STATUE WILL GET THE CHANCE TO WRITE ABOUT THE PERSON WHOSE NAME IS ON THE STATUE AND ALSO ABOUT WHAT JOHN ATYEO MEANT TO THEM.  THIS WILL HAPPEN AT THE START OF NEXT SEASON.

 

  • WE ARE THINKING ABOUT EXPANDING THE BOOK TO ALL CITY FANS - TO GIVE US YOUR STORIES AS A CITY SUPPORTER AT ASHTON GATE.  THERE ARE ALREADY SOME IN THIS THREAD.  THE WORKING TITLE IS "CITY TILL I DIE - 2" BUT THAT IS UNLIKELY TO BE THE FINAL TITLE.

 

  • PLEASE SEND IN YOUR STORY!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...