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Last Updated: Sunday, 1 May, 2005, 13:27 GMT 14:27 UK
Fans' farewell to hallowed Vetch
Fans as Swansea's Vetch Field

Swansea football fans made their way to the city's Vetch Field for what was likely to be the last time on Saturday.

It was the final scheduled league game at the 93-year-old stadium before the team move to a new 20,000-seater venue.

Entertainer Max Boyce led the singing in the pre-match festivities, which included a parade of former players.

Many supporters turned out in team colours to mark the end of an era. The Swans beat visitors Shrewsbury 1-0, prompting a final pitch invasion.

Swansea scored early in the match, allowing the thousands of loyal fans to take voice throughout the game.

Celebrity visitors lending their weight to the celebrations including former Swansea manager John Toshack, as well as former Wales international Leighton James.

Fan Glen Donnachie, 31, was one of those who made the trip.

He said: "It was a good atmosphere. The parade of the players before the start really helped.

"Everyone joined in the singing with Max Boyce and the national anthem, that really got things to fever pitch.

Fans on the Vetch Field
Fans took to the pitch after the game to collect turf as a memento

"It was nice to catch up with people, perhaps for the last time and reminisce about previous games and players."

Mr Donnachie said he and his friend stood in the same place on the terraces where they have usually stood at matches over the past ten years.

Nearby were a man and his son whom they had come to know over that time.

"The son was a little boy when we first met them. He used to stand on the railings for a better view. Now he's taller than all of us," he said.

After the game, the fans made a final, good-natured pitch invasion, many taking up bits of turf to have as a keepsake.

But it was not only the city's football fans who were saying goodbye to their ground on Saturday.

In the evening, the Ospreys rugby team played their last game at St Helens. They are also moving to the new stadium in Landore.


SEE ALSO:
Fans kick-off farewell to Vetch
07 Aug 04 |  South West Wales
Countdown to stadium kick-off
28 Dec 04 |  South West Wales
Glamorgan secure Swansea future
20 Apr 05 |  Glamorgan


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