IF you are among the 43,000-plus Coventry City fans heading down to Wembley on Sunday, here’s a glimpse of how the sky blue army of 1987 did it – throughout the day and into the evening with city-centre celebrations.
This rare video footage – shot long before mobile phones – shows fans mingling outside Wembley; the still often-mentioned greetings from fans on M1 motorway bridges as coaches triumphantly returned; and celebratory mayhem in Corporation Street, city centre, into the night.
Those of us who experienced Wembley and Corporation Street as fans’ coaches pulled in to White Street coach park will never forget the solid lines of tooting cars, the Belgrade Theatre fountain where even the water was turned Sky Blue, and the ‘congas’ along the length of the street.
The video epitomises the way fans typically experienced the whole occasion of Coventry City’s first FA Cup win in 104 years.
The footage – posted on YouTube only last year and with just 1,300 views so far – features a group of fans who initially gathered at the Shepherd and Shepherdess pub in Keresley Road around 7am on May 16, 1987. It features their entire day, minus what happened inside the stadium.
You can see while some excited fans got on a coach, others drove down the motorway in a decked up Sky Blue Ford – and the M1 looked distinctly empty compared with today.