Who Are You, Jackie Davenport?
One of the most mis-used words in football is the word ‘supporter’. I can’t understand how people who never go to watch their team play, actually manifest their ‘support’, beyond buying a replica shirt from their local sports shop. One person who certainly does show her support for Notts most actively is OSA member Jackie Davenport, who lives in Eastleigh, Hampshire. In this issue, we ask Jackie “Who are ya?”.
She tells us that she has supported The Magpies since 1960 when she came to games with a school friend and her dad and brother. Jackie goes on to say that she stopped coming to games in 1979, when she embarked on a 16 year relationship with a man who had no interest in football. Much to her regret, she then missed most of our glory years (she calls them her Wilderness Years). Together they moved to Eastleigh in 1985 where sadly, her partner died in 1996. Since then Jackie has travelled more and more often to watch the Pies and now misses very few games, home or away.
Often asked why she supports Notts County by people in her adopted town of Eastleigh, and she explains that she originates from Nottingham, they usually say ‘Why not support Forest?’ to which Jackie tells us that her stock reply is ‘I don’t understand the question’!
For Jackie, to come to a home game at Meadow Lane, involves a round trip of 330 miles and spending two and a half hours on the road each way! One season, Jackie calculated that she travelled 15,000 miles following Notts County. Jackie finishes off by telling us that she doesn’t begrudge a mile of it or a penny of the cost; There is nothing else she would rather do and nothing else she would rather spend her money on than follow Notts County.
Now that is dedication of the highest order! Jackie was injured by a stray ball during the game at Wycombe but hopefully that won’t stop her from continuing to personify the word ‘supporter’ in its truest sense.