TELEVISION cameras made a rare appearance in Huddersfield when Bolton visited back in January 1967— and Town didn’t disappoint the viewers.
The trans-Pennine Second Division (now Championship) showdown was filmed by ABC TV and shown on ITV’s World of Soccer show the following afternoon.
Modern football fans might be used to seeing footage from every match every weekend on their television screens.
But before the satellite TV boom in the nineties, the action was much more restricted, and only a handful of games were shown.
That meant a visit from the cameras was something of an event, with Town’s only previous home screening being the top-of-the-table Division II tussle with Coventry in May 1966, which was on the flagship BBC Saturday night programme Match of the Day.
ABC TV was the ITV contractor on Saturdays and Sundays in the Midlands and North of England between 1956 and 1968, when Yorkshire TV was born.
The new Leeds-based company had the rights to broadcast seven days a week, and for the 1968-69 season, began their own football highlights show, on which Town featured more often.
However that was all in the future when Tom Johnston’s side lined up against Bill Ridding’s Bolton in front of an 18,176 crowd and the cameras, which were perched on a specially-built gantry in the eves of the East Terrace.
It was an action-packed affair, with Town surviving a furious late onslaught to win 2-1.
Youngster Steve Smith, given the nod ahead of Brian Clark, had a fine game at inside-right, and was a key figure in the first goal (pictured) scored by Colin Dobson after 14 minutes.
The 20-year-old surged through from his own half and picked out former England winger Mike Hellawell, who crossed quickly for Dobson to head home.
Tony Leighton had picked up an ankle injury during the build-up to that goal, but soldiered on with heavy strapping, and netted Town’s second a minute after the restart.
Hellawell’s opposite winger Brian Hill supplied the centre.
And Leighton nipped in to leave Bolton’s ex-England goalkeeper Eddie Hopkinson helpless with a well-placed bullet header.
Town were well on top, and Dobson hit the bar before John Napier cleared off the line from Hill, but Bolton ensured a tense finale when John Byrom scored with a fine solo effort after 78 minutes.
Now it was the Lancastrians’ turn to attack, with top youngster Francis Lee prominent, but Town goalkeeper John Oldfield and his defence held firm to claim the points.