MEMORY LANE: Hartlepool’s female footballers

FLASHBACK: The AEI Ladies in a match against the ladies of Cerebos in Hartlepool
FLASHBACK: The AEI Ladies in a match against the ladies of Cerebos in Hartlepool
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WOMEN’S football is gaining an increasingly high profile across the world.

Tens of thousands flocked to Wembley at the weekend to watch England take on Germany.

But the ladies’ game is nothing new and has been all the rage in Hartlepool for decades.

We have previously reported how town women led the way in the first ever international match in the early 1900s.

In July this year, we told how Nellie Kirk, the lady from West Hartlepool was part of a football team called the Munitionettes and did so well, she qualified to compete in what is thought to have been the first female international football match in history.

In 1917, she travelled to Belfast to play for England against Ireland. But football, it seems, was a popular sport for women in Hartlepool in later years.

It seems as though there was another period when Hartlepool was well known for an annual match. In 1967, the AEI ladies team took on a side from Cerebos and AEI - or AEI Telecommunications Division Hartlepool to give them their full title - triumphed by six clear goals.

Our grainy picture from the day shows that hundreds of people turned out to watch and it led to even more challenges for the talented AEI team.

Our 1967 report told how they were then tasked with taking on a team from the public relations office at Hartlepools United. The venue was Grayfields and the match was held as a fundraiser.

But what happened? We want to know more. Were you one of the ladies who took part and which position did you play in?

The game was a first for the town. One source at the time said it was the first ever match to be played in Hartlepool between men’s and women’s teams.

We would love to know more about the AEI and Cerebos teams. Contact Chris Cordner on (01429) 239377 or email chris.cordner@jpress.co.uk