FOOTBALL fever is again engulfing the world, and the footballers of whichever country lifts the trophy on July 15 in the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow will undoubtedly be mobbed when they arrive home.

But will they be mobbed as much as the kings of Kingsway were in the 1950s?

The 1950s were the heyday of Bishop Auckland FC, “the two blues”, because they won the FA Amateur Cup in 1950, 1955, 1956 and 1957 – the first time the trophy had been won by the same club in three successive years.

Each April, the players returned home to the Market Place for a triumphant open-topped bus tour (bus provided by Lockeys).

“Along streets lined with madly cheering people, the players, sitting on top of a slowly moving motor coach waved and laughed as the captain, Tommy Stewart, held aloft the gleaming trophy,” said The Northern Echo in 1955.

The coach, said the Echo, “seemed to be floating on a sea of upturned faces, waving hats, newspapers and Two Blues rosettes. People hung precariously from the windows of the upper storeys of surrounding buildings and business premises were bedecked with blue bunting”.

In 1957, the scenes were even greater. The players were mobbed when they detrained at Bank Top station, and their route from Darlington through Heighington, Redworth, Shildon and South Church was lined with people.

At Cabin Gate, on the edge of Bishop Auckland, they were met by the Mainsforth Colliery Band, and together they went in triumph, down a full Newgate Street and into the sardine-packed Market Place.

Mr M Caine, who now lives in Coventry, was there. “I remember a lady who dyed her hair one half light blue the other dark blue in readiness for her trip to Wembley,” he says. “I remember seeing her in Newgate Street and I think there was a picture in the Echo.”

Two shades of blue may not have come out well in black and white.

Mr Caine also remembers the Two Blues theme tune:

Roll along, Bishop Auckland, roll along,
Put the ball in the net where it belongs
If we have a bit of luck
We may win the FA Cup
Roll along, Bishop Auckland, roll along.