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Last Updated: Thursday, 3 August 2006, 13:30 GMT 14:30 UK
Accrington Stanley, who are they?
By Chris Charles

Carl Rice in iconic 1988 milk advert
If it's good enough for Rushie...
Never mind va va voom, back in the 80s there was only one iconic football advert worth talking about, as a young Liverpool fan tried to tempt his mate with a glass of the white stuff.

"Milk? Ugh!"
"It's what Ian Rush drinks."
"Ian Rush?"
"Yeah. And he says if I don't drink lots of milk, when I grow up I'll only be good enough to play for Accrington Stanley."
"Accrington Stanley? Who are they?"

That commercial, released a quarter of a century after Accrington were forced to resign from the Football League, put the club back on the map, albeit for the wrong reasons.

When they suffered their inglorious departure from the old fourth division on 12 March 1962, there seemed no way back for a side riddled with debt and unable to fulfil their fixtures or pay the players' wages.

Now, at last, the mickey-taking can stop as Stanley prepare to make their return from the footballing wilderness with a League Two clash at Chester City on Saturday.

A lot has happened since the club went away - man went to the moon, England won the World Cup and a shy, retiring young lady married her prince charming in a fairytale wedding.

But enough about Cheryl Tweedy - who were the big names making the headlines in the year Accy said their goodbyes?

Wendy Richard as Pauline Fowler

  • Chart-toppers in 1962 included Cliff Richard, B Bumble and the Stingers and, bizarrely, EastEnders actress Wendy Richard - who took Come Outside to number one with Mike Sarne.

    The Rolling Stones, meanwhile, were taking their first steps to rock'n'roll superstardom, no doubt prompting cries of "They'll never last" from record industry cynics.

  • Film fans were able to take their minds off football for an hour or two as they flocked to the Accrington Odeon to watch a bikini-clad Ursula Andress emerge from the water in Dr No. Other releases included Lawrence of Arabia, Westside Story and, The Longest Day - renamed March 12 by Stanley supporters.
  • Tom Cruise

  • Celebrities galore popped into the world. Where would Hollywood be without the likes of Jodie Foster, Jim Carrey, Wesley Snipes and Demi Moore? But perhaps the biggest name to have his bottom slapped on the delivery table that year was Tom Cruise. Presumably his mother had the good grace to remain silent.
  • An average house in the UK would set you back the princely sum of 2,784 and you could buy a loaf of bread, 3lbs of potatoes and a dozen eggs and still have enough change out of thrupence ha'penny to get a pint of mild in at the local - probably.
  • Ah yes, great days indeed - unless you are an Accrington Stanley fan, for whom the year 1962 has become as big a millstone around the neck as 1966 for the current crop of England players.

    Neutrals up and down the country will be willing them to mark their return to league football with a win - and if they do come away with all three points from the Deva Stadium, you can bet they won't be toasting their success with milk.

    Accrington complete their fairytale
    15 Apr 06 |  Non League
    Accrington thank milk advert star
    09 Mar 06 |  Lancashire


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