Field of Play:End of The Game (2016)

Field of Play:End of the Game memorialises the sound of the football crowd at Cambridge City Football Club's Milton Road ground following the construction by Crest Nicholson of 106 new homes.

An engraved, brass whistle encased in a box is hung in each new home built on the site of the old Cambridge City football ground. The whistle remains silent except for once, annually, when it may be blown from 3pm within a 90-minute period on the Saturday closest to the 27 April. This is the day in 2013 on which the last Cambridge City game was played at the Milton Road football ground.

At the point of purchase each homeowner is given an engraved ACME Thunderer brass whistle (classic football referees whistle) that is identified as being part of the property in the deeds. The deeds also specify that the whistle can only be blown once, annually; on the Saturday at 3pm closest to the date of the last Cambridge City Football Club game at the Milton Road ground. There are 106 engraved brass whistles – one for each property –, which are encased in a birch-faced-ply box with 7 commemorative cards. When a property is purchased the whistle and box is fixed discreetly in the hallway next to the front door.

End of the Game is part of Field of Play which was the inaugural community event held on Saturday 30th April 2016, to mark the final match played at Milton Road Football Ground and to celebrate the new community at Mitchams Park. It was conceived by Liminal to contribute to Zoe Chamberlain’s KickstArt Project, funded by Crest Nicholson. ADeC coordinated the event, in collaboration with Zoe Chamberlain, Liminal and Kathryn Rowland.

Field of Play includes Zoe Chamberlain’s Active Landscape; a sculptural all-age play facility embedded in the site, Liminal’s End of the Game; a memorial to the lost sound of the football crowd and Kathryn Rowland’s Spirit of Song; a new anthem for Mitchams Park. Cambridge KickstArt In 2015 Liminal were approached by Zoe Chamberlain to work with her and Adec to develop a site sensitive project on what was Cambridge City Football Ground as part of the Cambridge KickstArt programme.

Cambridge Kickstart

Cambridge KickstART is a programme of public art projects celebrating the creation of over 100 new homes at Mitchams Park, the former site of Cambridge City Football Club. Field of Play is part of the KickstART programme developed by artist and producer Zoё Chamberlain, supported by award-winning house builders Crest Nicholson Plc. KickstART incorporates a variety of cross art-form collaborations to help foster community pride and enhance a sense of place within the neighbourhood of the new development.

As part of the earlier work Zoe had undertaken, the surrounding community identified the loss of the sound of the football crowd as something they would miss. End of the Game remembers this lost ‘soundmark’. The sound of the crowd for us, signified the coming together of the wider community, whether they watched the game or only heard it from a distance. At 3pm every Saturday, on ‘the whistle,’ play began. Now only those who used to live around the Milton Road ground when Cambridge City played, remember the sound. With the new housing, came a new community and the question we were asked to address was how to create a memorial for this lost soundmark?

And Now It’s Time to Celebrate

The event was opened with a poem called ‘And Now It’s Time to Celebrate’ by children’s author and new resident of the development; Ian Whybrow.

And now it’s time to celebrate with three resounding pips.

So come on everybody, raise your whistles to your lips. (Wait for it…!)

Blow for the old City boots that trod trod trod. (Whistle!)

One for the new supporters and the Sawston squad . (Whistle!)

And loudest of all, just to show that we’re alive -

Blow for the Big Kick-off here at Lilywhite Drive. (Full Acme Thunderer!)

It is proposed that annually on the Saturday closest to the day of the last Cambridge City football match played at the Milton Road grounds on 27 April 2013, residents and members of the surrounding community will be encouraged to come together in an annual Field of Play event.