Arbroath Football Club is famous for two things, three if you include the steak and black pudding pies.

The other two are that no ground in Europe is believed closer to the sea – about five yards at high-water mark, it’s reckoned, though that seems rather a littoral interpretation – and, of course, that 36-0 Scottish FA Cup defeat of poor Bon Accord, back in September 1885.

It’s claimed a world record for the “professional” game, though since the visitors turned up without any proper kit, their professionalism may be questioned.

In North-East England, the nadir may have been Barton Athletic’s 30-0 Darlington and District League defeat in the 1990s, Red Well Rangers from Barnard Castle managing to restrict Stanhope Town to 29 last season. Others may know worse.

Arbroath would have scored 43, they reckon, had the referee better understood the offside rule. The Scottish Athletic Journal the following week reported that the ref had since seen the error of his ways.

A visit has always been an ambition, Last Saturday, forsaking all other, we went.

It’s about 75 miles north-east of Edinburgh, population 24,000, famous for little else save for Arbroath smokies – a sort of ripper kipper – and as the birthplace of the bloke who invented the water bed.

Andy Stewart, the kilted crooner, was also brought up in Arbroath and retired there once the battle was o’er.

Both team and citizens are known as the Red Lichties, a reference to the colour of the maritime warning lights that shone from the harbour. It’s “Lichtie” as in “michty”; ask Oor Wullie.

At the Gayfield ground, the 36-0 bar’s inexplicably closed. Bouncers guard Tuttie’s Neuk, across the road. The younger bairn, also in attendance, pays £15 for an Arbroath scarf and another £8 for a little mug. Granddad chips in a further £8 for an Arbroath baby-gro.

Admission to an atmospheric, almost amphitheatrical old ground is £18, a steak and black pudding pie £2.10. They alone approach value for money.

It’s the Scottish Championship, the second tier. The Red Lichties, third tier champions last season, host Dunfermline. The programme carries several pictures of Dick Campbell, the manager, a large and hairless man who when sacked – like death and taxes, ineluctable – might get a job with the bouncers at Tuttie’s Neuk.

Either that or tossing the caber.

It’s a poor game and wind affected game, not even enlivened by a ball over the stand and into the briny. The 1,631 crowd grows restless, occasionally given to the sort of imprecation not normally heard in The Broons. None seems to be saying “Jings”, anyway.

Arbroath edge it through Luke Donnelly’s 65th minute screamer. One down, 35 to go.