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Following three successive league defeats wrapped around the FA Cup defeat against Darlington, Burnley were able to get back to winning ways in 1998 with a 1-0 home win against Blackpool.

It was a difficult time for one family following a house fire in North Street that left eight-year-old Jenny Jones trapped in the blaze. But David Parkinson, aged 16, the girl’s cousin, was on hand and bravely went back in to rescue her. It left David in hospital where he said: “I could feel the heat through the kitchen and I could hear Jenny moaning. I got a little glimpse of her near the front window.”

This was one of a number of suspicious fires being investigated by the police and when praising David for his actions, Fire Station Officer Steve Cope told reporters: “He did everything correctly. If he hadn’t we could have been looking at a murder charge this morning.”

A Burnley woman, and a woman who had fostered children too, had appeared before the magistrates alongside her ex-foster son and now partner, charged with a catalogue of child abuse. The woman was charged with four counts of wilful neglect of a child under fourteen and one of wilful neglect of a child under sixteen. Her partner was charged with wilfully assaulting, ill treating and neglecting a child under 14. No pleas were entered and they were released on bail until January for committal proceedings.

Back to fires now and fire fighters battled to save a disused printing works in Trafalgar Street for the second time in just over a week. The road was closed for some time on the Sunday and Station Commander John Phentbean explained: “We have had small fires in here before and we suppose it is children gaining access to the building. The burning rubbish has spread to involve the north light roof system but it is not as bad as it appeared when we arrived and saw smoke coming out of the whole roof.”

Prominent Burnley businessman Eric Cookson had passed away in this week. Seeing this news, it reminded me of the 1960s when Cookson and Bob Lord, who I think it can be safely said were definitely not friends, clashed over a share transfer. Cookson wanted to by one hundred Burnley Football Club shares from Luther Wilkinson who was Jimmy McIlroy’s father-in-law. Lord blocked the transfer and he subsequently blocked Wilkinson’s attempts to sell to Mr Kenneth Bates, a business partner of Cookson.

In 1998, Cookson passed away at the age of 79. The former Grenadier guard who became a JP, was described as a keen supporter of both Burnley Football Club and Burnley Cricket Club although his main hobby was photography and enjoying travelling to India to take photographs, but he was best known in town for having built up Howarth’s the building company based at Oakmount House on Trafalgar Street and during his tenure they were responsible for the construction of the Keirby Hotel and the new town centre shopping area and market.

There was some sad news when Burnley man Andrew Pounder, who was on remand at Preston, was found hanging on his second night in the prison. He had used a shoe lace to hang himself and had left a note saying he couldn’t handle a prison sentence. A jury returned a verdict that he had killed himself following the inquest.

Meanwhile, Jason McVeigh, also from Burnley and aged 27, had taken his own life in the same way at the prison in Preston. He had been remanded for shop lifting. Andrew and Jason were among a number of deaths in that particular prison in recent times and Jason’s family were calling for changes to be made to the system to try and prevent any further deaths.

This was the week when the directors of Burnley Football Club met with Supporters’ Club representatives. Chairman Frank Teasdale was present and told the supporters that he was very worried about recent results and felt that you would have to be crackers not to be. He also dismissed the notion of the club appointing a chief executive, claiming they already had one who worked for nothing, that being himself.

The Ray Ingleby situation was discussed and they were told by new director Barry Kilby: “I have invested £1 million as a loan which would be offset against any rights issue. I volunteered that when I joined the board. I’ve asked Ray whether he would match that and if he did I would personally support him being given a seat on the board as a shareholder.”

Teasdale, however, made it clear that any offer could only come after the rights issue but that he would support Kilby’s decision should Ingleby forward his million. Ingleby’s representative David Parry explained the situation and said: “Ray needs to establish the details of the rights issue before he commits. That’s why he wanted to get onto the board before he put any money in. What we really need to do is sit down with them and find out more about what they plan for the future.”

Whatever the future held for Ingleby and Burnley, the immediate future was not good as we looked to get out of a shocking run of results. Manager Stan Ternent received a blow ahead of the Blackpool game when Everton said no to extending the loan of John O’Kane. A clearly unhappy Ternent wanted him for another month at least but reported: “Everton won’t extend his loan. I wanted to keep him on, but maybe they are short over there. I don’t know what their situation is but we can’t have him for another month.”

He also confirmed that, having spent £75,000 to bring in goalkeeper Paul Crichton, he still had a further £175,000 to spend. “The situation is that I have £175,000 to spend, having bought Paul,” he said and added: “I am happy to have that much money, and the board have done well to find that much for me. Perhaps if I come up with something else, they might find a bit more for me.”

Stan was more concerned with the team for the Blackpool game. The injury situation had worsened with both Brian Reid and Glen Little facing a race against time to be fit having picked up injuries at Bournemouth. “Both are struggling,” Stan said of them and he admitted the only players who had been available for training were Crichton, Phil Eastwood, Mark Ford, Chris Brass, Andy Cooke and Andy Payton.

Asked about Gordon Armstrong and Peter Swan, he added: “Gordon could well be fit, but Peter will probably be a bit longer yet. Paul Smith is undergoing rehabilitation in the pool, but still can’t fully extend his leg after his knee injury and is a million miles away. Ronnie Jepson, Neil Moore and Paul Weller are all out as well. I’ve never known anything like it. Injuries aren’t an excuse, they are a fact.”

Having updated on the injuries, Ternent, speaking about the game, was adamant that his Burnley team would not be found wanting. “It will be a tough match as derbies always are,” he said. “Last time we were found wanting but we won’t be this time. Hopefully we will have a good day and a win would really lift us.”

Brian Reid heads over the bar

The good news ahead of the game was both Reid and Little making it against a Blackpool team who had former Burnley loanee Junior Bent on the bench and a future Wembley winner for Burnley in their defence in Clarke Carlisle. Not only that, there was a surprise when O’Kane was named in the line-up. Everton boss Walter Smith, having learned of the perilous financial situation at their club was now looking to move players on. He’d sold Gavin McCann to Sunderland for half a million and it looked now as if we could make the O’Kane deal a permanent one for around £150,000 at the end of this second month’s loan.

When we were beaten 2-1 at Bloomfield Road just over a year earlier, Blackpool got away with murder with the referee denying us two blatant penalties. Blackpool, and their manager Nigel Worthington, labelled us a bunch of moaners. How sweet, therefore, that this time we beat them with a controversial penalty that sent Worthington and his players moaning all the way back to the Fylde Coast.

This was a game with little to commend it. Brian Reid and Mark Robertson both played really well while Mark Ford was outstanding in the midfield and showing just how much we’d missed him during the time he was out injured.

But it was difficult for a Burnley team with little confidence, coming up against a Blackpool team with no adventure whatsoever and packing their defence almost from the outset. Matt Hewlett, the loanee from Bristol City, had our first effort at goal but his shot went just wide, and at the other end the main threat was coming via the runs forward by Marvin Bryan, taking advantage of O’Kane picking up an injury in the early minutes of the game and battling on bravely until half time.

Andy Payton’s penalty gives Burnley the win

We’d had very little in terms of goal chances in the first half but seven minutes after the break came our first real opportunity when Little broke down the right and crossed for Andy Cooke whose header went straight into the grateful hands of Steve Banks.

The game really was looking as if it would end 0-0 but midway through the half, Andy Payton received the ball in the box where he went own as he tried to go between Gary Brabin and Carlisle. There were lengthy protests from the Blackpool players after referee Paul Rejer had pointed to the spot but a penalty it was and PAYTON drilled the spot kick just inside the base of the left-hand post.

It was finally a goal, a sweet goal, a derby winning goal, no matter how harsh the penalty award might have been. We’d ended the nightmare run and won three vital, much needed points.

Stan admitted it wasn’t the best of games but, having seen us lose 4-1 just weeks earlier at Preston, he said: “It was a derby match and when you look on Sunday morning or again today then Burnley have won that derby 1-0. When you look at the last derby, Burnley lost 4-1. Which way would you rather have it?

“It was a scrappy game as derby games sometimes are but we got the result I felt we deserved. It’s been a long, hard road this month and all credit to the players because they have stuck at it and even though we have had a lot of injuries they have come through.”

Worthington went home moaning claiming Payton had just fallen over.

The teams were;

Burnley: Paul Crichton, Chris Brass, Matt Heywood, Brian Reid, John O’Kane (Phil Eastwood ht), Glen Little, Mark Robertson (Chris Scott 88), Mark Ford, Matt Hewlett, Andy Cooke, Andy Payton. Sub not used: Brad Maylett.

Blackpool: Steve Banks, Marvin Bryan, John Hills, Tony Butler, Clarke Carlisle, Ian Hughes, Gary Brabin (Adam Nowland 70), Phil Clarkson, Ian Lawson, Steve Bushell, Brett Ormerod (Junior Bent 81). Sub not used: David Bardsley.

Referee: Paul Rejer (Leamington Spa).

Attendance: 11,925.

The win had taken us back up to seventeenth in a table that showed no change at top or bottom, with Stoke still leading Fulham at the top, followed by the same next four in the play-off positions, and no changes in the relegation positions either.

Chesterfield and Wrexham both won at home and were helped with goals from former Burnley players. David Reeves scored in Chesterfield’s 2-0 win against Macclesfield and Kevin Russell scored the only goal as Wrexham beat Notts County 1-0.

Division Two Results

Saturday 28th November
Bristol Rovers 2 Oldham 2
Burnley 1 Blackpool 0
Chesterfield 2 Macclesfield 0
Colchester 0 Millwall 0
Gillingham 1 Fulham 0
Luton 1 Manchester City 1
Preston 2 Wigan 2
Reading 2 Lincoln 1
Walsall 1 Bournemouth 0
Wrexham 1 Notts County 0
Wycombe 0 Stoke 1
York 1 Northampton 1

Burnley Goalscorers (League)

11: Andy Payton
5: Andy Cooke
2: Rune Vindheim
1; Gordon Armstrong, Phil Eastwood, Glen Little, Brian Reid

Burnley Goalscorers (Cups)

3: Andy Payton
1: Andy Cooke

Leading Goalscorers

11: Andy Payton (Burnley)
10: Carl Asaba (Gillingham), Richard Cresswell (York), Mark Stein (Bournemouth)
9: Barry Hayles (Bristol Rovers), Andy Rammell (Walsall), Martin Williams (Reading)
8: Stuart Barlow (Wigan), Carlo Corazzin (Northampton), Shaun Goater (Manchester City)
7: Grant Brebner (Reading), Kurt Nogan (Preston), Paul Shaw (Millwall), Darren Wrack (Walsall)

League Table

Pos Team pld w d l f a gd pts
1 Stoke 20 14 1 5 30 15 15 43
2 Fulham 18 12 3 3 28 14 14 39
3 Walsall 20 12 3 5 30 24 6 39
4 Preston 19 9 7 3 34 19 15 34
5 Gillingham 20 8 9 3 29 18 11 33
6 Chesterfield 18 9 4 5 20 12 8 31
7 Luton 18 8 5 5 24 19 5 29
8 Manchester City 20 7 8 5 24 19 5 29
9 Reading 19 8 5 6 23 25 -2 29
10 Millwall 20 7 7 6 19 21 -2 28
11 Bournemouth 18 7 6 5 29 20 9 27
12 Blackpool 19 7 5 7 24 24 0 26
13 Wigan 19 7 4 8 24 20 4 25
14 Colchester 19 6 6 7 19 23 -4 24
15 Wrexham 20 6 6 8 20 27 -7 24
16 Bristol Rovers 20 5 8 7 24 25 -1 23
17 Burnley 20 6 5 9 22 30 -8 23
18 Notts County 19 5 6 8 21 25 -4 21
19 York 19 5 6 8 23 33 -10 21
20 Macclesfield 20 4 7 9 17 26 -9 19
21 Northampton 20 3 9 8 18 23 -5 18
22 Oldham 20 4 5 11 19 32 -13 17
23 Wycombe 20 3 6 11 16 26 -10 15
24 Lincoln 19 3 3 13 19 36 -17 12
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