This Friday – 20 October – Off The Shelf; Sheffield’s Festival of Words
Mark and Clive will be appearing at this year’s Off The Shelf Festival this Friday evening. This will be a talk about the book and Fred Spiksley and will be different from the talk at Hillsborough in November, so why not come along to both?
Showroom 5, Showroom Cinema, 15 Paternoster Row, S1 2BX
This follows our successful evening with the West Midland’s Owls at the Wellington pub on 7 October where everyone in the room left with a copy of our book, some taking two! Here is what John Dyson of the West Midland Owls had to say about the evening…
“The authors of “Flying Over an Olive Grove – The Remarkable Story of Fred Spiksley” kindly agreed to speak and present their work to the West Midlands Owls Sheffield Wednesday supporters group and other interested football fans recently. Clive and Mark, the authors of the book, were hugely knowledgeable, interesting and at times hilarious. Their presentation included a treasure trove of interesting facts and some fantastic pictures. They took questions and were able to range over and above the (already fascinating) story of Fred Spiksley to include information on the history of the game and social history more generally. They brought a selection of books, cards and some really well produced colorised pictures of the first Sheffield Wednesday game at Hillsborough – doing a roaring trade in their top-quality material. I highly recommend the book, and if you have the chance – go and see the talk.”
We are looking forward to sharing Fred’s story once again this Friday. You can buy tickets from offtheshelf.org.uk
Alan Biggs Show Appearance
Mark and Clive appeared live on the Alan Biggs show recently to discuss new evidence of Fred Spiksley’s hat-trick against Scotland in 1893 as well discussing Fred’s amazing life story. The whole interview is available on Alan’s Youtube channel in two parts and can be viewed here.
The Olive Grove Years Talk
Last 30 Tickets!!!
11th November – Hillsborough
There are only 30 tickets remaining for our Olive Grove Years talk at Hillsborough on 11 November. This is a brand new talk that we are doing and is a special one off event as part of Sheffield Wednesday’s 150 year Anniversary. All the information you need is below, we look forward to seeing you there.
Buy Tickets here
Buy the book here
Fred Spiksley Film
The authors of Flying Over An Olive Grove have teamed up with Rich Stonehouse to lead the project in bringing Fred Spiksley’s story to both the big and small screen. This is a very exciting time and the story certainly has the potential to gain the wider appeal necessary. Anyone who is interested in supporting us or gaining further information should visit our sister website by clicking here, or contact Rich directly on email@example.com
Spiksley Included In SWFC Dream Team Mural – Message From Clive
Fred Spiksley has been voted into Sheffield Wednesday’s Dream Team. A mural is being painted of Wednesday’s greatest ten players of all time to mark their 150 year anniversary on 4 September. Wednesday supporters voted Fred in, which is quite amazing when you think that no-one alive has ever seen him play. The painting is mural is being painted by the superbly talented Jamie Cooper and you can follow his progress here. Spiksley joins Ronald Nelson, Des Walker, John Fantham and Ron Springett in the Dream Team, with remaining players being reviled one at a time every Monday on SWFC.co.uk. Below is a message to Sheffield Wednesday supporters who voted of Fred.
Dear Owls fans,
As a member of the Spiksley family I would like to thank Sheffield Wednesday supporters for voting Fred Spiksley into your 150th Anniversary Dream Team Mural. Earlier this week our family were very surprised to discover Fred had received enough votes and I wanted to let you know that we are very grateful for this superb acknowledgement of Fred’s achievements at SWFC. We are very proud of him and it is humbling to think that you are too.
Not all of the players from Spiksley’s era can be acknowledged in a project like this, and we very much see Fred as someone who also represents a number of fine Wednesday players who made history for your club by becoming the first Yorkshire side to play top flight football, bringing in 1896 the FA Cup to Yorkshire for the first time, winning Sheffield Wednesday their first Football League Championship in 1903, not forgetting capturing the Second Division title in the first season at Hillsborough in 1899-1900.
When we heard about the Dream Team mural we did not believe Fred had any hope of inclusion. We expected people to vote for players that either they themselves or their parents remembered seeing play at Hillsborough. Why would anyone vote for someone who last played for the club 114 years ago? There are obviously many reasons why, we just didn’t believe that it would happen but we are delighted it did.
As much as we sent out via the spiksley.com site and across Twitter at @spiksleybook an encouraging message for people to vote for Fred there was no campaign to get him in. We did not ask individuals or groups to vote for Fred and as non-Wednesday supporters none of us or our families voted for Fred. We believed it was important that the decision was made by the people that the mural is intended for. It is therefore fantastic to see that Sheffield Wednesday supporters continue to recognise their history and the men who made the club what it is today. Fred would feel truly honoured.
Thank you again for voting for my Great Great Uncle. I cannot wait to see him in a mural featuring your other greatest players.
We are delighted that Fred Spiksley is to feature in The Guardian newspaper/online at some point in the coming days. Fred’s story should be the next instalment of the regular sports feature; ‘The Forgotten Story of…
Other articles from the series are well worth a read and are available on The Guardian’s website using by clicking here.
We are delighted by the Amazon reviews that Flying Over An Olive Grove has been receiving. As you can see many have been very complementary. It makes all the hard work worth it to know that people are genuinely enjoying Fred’s amazing life story. Reviews have come in from supporters of a variety of different clubs, which has confirmed to us what we always believed; That Spiksley’s story has a much broader appeal than just the clubs that he played for. As much as we appreciate every sale on Amazon, we would obviously encourage people to buy directly from us here.
To mark the anniversary of Sheffield Wednesday’s 1st FA Cup victory on 18th April 1896 we started giving away Chapter 12 of our book – 1896 Hero – as a free sample Pdf. If you have not got our book and would like to see the quality of our work then this is a great opportunity to read a key chapter to see the level of detail that we managed to achieve. To get the sample chapter click here.
The opening chapter of the book is also available as a preview on Amazon, if you would like to start the book from the beginning.
Flying Over An Olive Grove has received a positive reaction from all areas of the Media. As you can see from below we have featured across a range of local, regional and national media outlets and have been bowled over by the kind comments we have been receiving. When people read the book they cannot believe that the story is true as it sounds more like a movie script than something that really happened. That’s one of the reasons that the book had to be written, to make sure that this wonderful football tale was not lost.