Terry Adams, who has reported on Hadleigh United for the past 27 years, has been honoured by the club, which has named The Millfield’s hospitality suite after him.
Adams, 77, first started reporting on the Brettsiders in 1991, and has been club president for the last 10 years.
Sadly, ill health has prevented him watching matches for much of the last two years, but he is still producing match reports, thanks to the help of people at the club who let him know what is going on.
The club’s hospitality suite is now known as The Terry Adams Suite, a fitting tribute to a loyal club servant.
“I have loved every minute of reporting on the beautiful game,” said Adams, who actually wrote his first match report in February 1966, when he was employed as a compositor at the East Anglian Daily Times, where he started work in 1955 after leaving school.
“It was a bit of a last-minute affair,” he said. “The then sports editor Alan Everett had been let down, and he asked me if I would be interested in filling in.
“From that moment on I never kicked another ball. Reporting football took over.”
Adams had been the Woodbridge Town goalkeeper for several seasons, making more than 200 appearances. He also made two appearances for Bury Town.
At the start of the 1966-67 season he began reporting on Felixstowe Town for the local weekly paper, and in 1972 graduated to covering Ipswich Town Reserves, who then played Saturday matches at Portman Road.
His reporting started in the days before computers, something he still doesn’t feel the need for.
He also has never driven, but always managed to get to games, either on public transport or by getting a lift with someone from the club he was reporting on.
Adams moved to Essex, working on the Essex Weekly News at Chelmsford, where he stayed until retiring.
The opportunity to join Hadleigh United came in July 1991 when the club was looking for someone to report on matches after their move into the Eastern Counties League.
That was when the pen name Brettsider first saw the light of day.
He’s not sure how many Hadleigh games he has covered, but since 1966 his overall total is well in excess of 2,000.
In his time at The Millfield, Hadleigh United have been promoted twice, and were champions of what is now the Thurlow Nunn League in 2014.
This, he says, is the “shining memory of my 27 years as press officer. Another highlight was reaching the quarter-final of the FA Vase the season before, when we went out at Tunbridge Wells.”
Hadleigh lost 2-0 to the eventual runners-up.
Although ill health means he no longer gets to matches, ‘the club keep me fully active in my scribe job, so I am still loving it. I really appreciate all that the club is doing for me.’
Club chairman Rolf Beggerow described Terry as the “man we go to whenever there’s a query about something in the past at the club. His ability to recall facts and figures is astounding.
“He is one of the longest-serving members of the club, and done such sterling work. He has always been there ever since I’ve been involved with the club.
“With ill health, many would have given up. But he has stuck at it.”
I got to know Terry during my eight years as sports editor at the Free Press.
Always reliable, his Hadleigh reports would be faxed over on Monday or Wednesday morning. We never had to chase him for them. And he would always ring to check we had received them. It’s a practice he follows to this day.