The 15th April has been a day of mixed fortunes in the history of Hendon Football Club with no fewer than 27 matches having been played on this day over the years.
We begin in 1911 with a Finchley & District League Division 1 match against the Great Northern Railway which ended in a 2-1 defeat for Hampstead Town. 11-years later in 1922 St Albans City romped away to a 6-0 win in the Athenian League.
Five years later on Good Friday, 1927, Barking Town won an Athenian League at Claremont Road 3-2, this on the day that the USSR established diplomatic relations with Switzerland and half a dozen years further on the club finally claimed a win thanks to strikes from Jimmy Spalton (2) and Freddie Evans to beat Enfield 3-0 at Claremont Road, this on the day that American actress Elizabeth Montgomery who later found fame as Samantha Spellman in the 1960s sitcom Bewitched was born.
A second six-goal thumping turned up in 1938 as Hayes dished out a thorough beating at Church Road in another 6-0 defeat for the Greens, a year later things went rather better at Claremont Road as a brace from Bob Thomas secured a 2-1 win over Sutton United in the Athenian League.
Bill Reay grabbed a goal in 1948 as Bromley were held to a 1-1 Athenian League draw and a couple of years later Southall came to Claremont Road in 1950 and returned to West London with a 1-0 win under their belts.
10-years later goals from Terry Howard and Jimmy Quail saw Grays Athletic beaten 2-0 in 1960 on the day that Phillippe, future king of Belgium who was throned in 2013, was born. Just a year later Hayes were at it again, this time at Claremont Road as they knocked the Greens out of the London Charity Cup with a 3-2 win. David Kemp and Albert Grainger scored the Hendon goals.
An Athenian League visit to Barnet in 1963 ended in a 3-1 defeat, John Dipper on target with the Greens then four years later in 1967 Tony Harding netted the goal in a 1-1 draw at Hayes Lane against Bromley in the Isthmian League.
In 1972 Micky Cannon, Bobby Childs and John Baker were on target in a second win over Sutton United to occur on this day, this time 3-2 also in the Isthmian League and just 2-years later in 1974 Baker was amongst the goals again, this time twice, in a 3-1 Middlesex Senior Cup final 1st leg against Edgware Town. Roger Connell netted the third goal to put the Greens in control of the tie on the day that incumbent president Diori Hamani was deposed during a military coup in Niger.
It was Bobby Childs that returned to the scoresheet just a year later in 1975 as he netted both goals in a 2-2 draw with Ilford at Claremont Road and three years later in 1978 a visit to Kingstonian ended in a 1-0 defeat.
Four-years later in 1982 Leytonstone-Ilford went nap in East London as they ran up a 5-2 win over the Greens for whom Graeme Sewell scored twice, this on the day that US actor Seth Rogan was born. Seven-years later in 1989 Gary Keen scored in a 1-1 draw at Claremont Road against Dulwich Hamlet, this on the day of the tragic Hillsborough disaster and students begin pro-democracy protests in Beijing.
A local derby in 1995 against Harrow Borough at Earlsmead saw Phil Gallagher grab a crucial hat-trick in a 4-2 win, Steve McKimm netted the other to secure the points and a couple of years later a terrific 2-1 win at Aylesbury United effectively secured safety from relegation. Dean Murphy and Simon Clarke scored the vital goals for Frank Murphy’s men.
Those that didn’t make the voyage to The Camrose in 2000 missed out on Matt Bartholomew’s one and only goal for Hendon in a 1-1 draw at Basingstoke Town before a visit to Bishop’s Stortford in 2003 ended in another heavy defeat, this time 4-1 with on-loan Stevenage striker Jack Midson coming off the bench to score his sole goal for the Greens.
Another visit to a club beginning with ‘B’ ended in disappointment in 2006 as Ross Pickett netted a consolation in a 3-1 defeat to Bromley in the club’s second visit to Hayes Lane on 15th April and a fourth consecutive match against a ‘B’ team in 2009 saw Brian Haule net the only goal of the game in a 1-0 win over Boreham Wood, this on the day that Clement Freud passed away.
Lee O’Leary was on target just a year later in 2010 with the only goal of the game against Carshalton Athletic as the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull in Iceland brings much of the airspace above Europe to a standstill.
2015 saw the club head to South London to visit Whyteleafe’s Church Road ground for the Isthmian League Cup final against Grays Athletic in what proved to be a full-blooded entertaining affair for the neutrals. Andre Da Costa profited from a goalkeeping error from Lamar Joseph-Johnson to give the Greens the lead after 36 minutes which Kezie Ibe doubled four minutes later with a superb finish.
Bradley Fortnum-Tomlinson reduced the arrears just before the break and it was largely thanks to Ben McNamara putting in a terrific performance between the sticks that the Greens remained ahead before Andre Da Costa scored yet another fabulous goal to add to his scrapbook, whipping a low strike into the bottom corner from the edge of the penalty area. Sean Cronin made it 3-2 in stoppage time, but the Greens managed to hold on for just a second Isthmian League cup triumph.
Two years later in 2017 an own goal and another strike from super-sub Marcel Barrington saw Met Police beaten 2-0 at Silver Jubilee Park to maintain the Greens’ hopes of avoiding relegation with just two matches of the campaign remaining.
Of 27 matches to have taken place on 15th April to date there have been 11 wins, five draws and 11 defeats with 42 goals scored and a to-date record high 52 conceded.