I've Got a Lovely Bunch of Coconuts blasts out of the wind-up gramophone at Coconuts Acres night and day, but elsewhere you don't often hear our anthem played more than once in one day.
A wonderful exception to the rule occurred on Saturday, March 19, before the U's kicked off against Yeovil, as a tribute to Russell Crane (see obituary below).
Coconuts rang out loud and proud over the PA as United and Yeovil supporters joined in a minute's applause in honour of the great man. That tribute followed a reading of these evocative words, which flowed from the pen of Andrew Bennett:
[On May Day 1952] United unexpectedly defeated the mighty Cambridge City 2-0 in the Cambs Invitation Cup final before a crowd of 9,814 at Milton Road, Crane scoring both goals in a five-minute spell during the first half. At the final whistle United’s ecstatic fans stormed the pitch and chaired Crane off to a rousing chorus of I’ve Got a Lovely Bunch of Coconuts.
Derek Haylock, second from left, in the Dion Dublin Bar with members of Russell Crane's family after the United home game against Yeovil Town on Saturday, 19 March 2016.
It was fitting that 100 Years of Coconuts' guest for the Yeovil game was Derek Haylock, U's goalkeeper in the 1950s who played with Russell and admired him as much as any fan. Derek and his son Darren were joined in the Dion Dublin Bar after the game by no fewer than 21 members of Russell's family.