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Dad's handy skills helped rescue Swansea City's FA Cup tie with Arsenal

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: January 04, 2013

Mary Yorke holds a photograph of her father, Ron Terry (centre top) helping to repair the vandalised goalposts at the Vetch in February 1968, the morning before Arsenal played the Swans in the 4th round of the FA Cup.

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THE return of Arsenal in the FA Cup has brought back fond memories for a Gower woman who's dad helped to save the day in a famous match at the Vetch.

The Londoners come to the Liberty Stadium this weekend for an eagerly-awaited cup tie against the high-flying Swans.

But more than 40 years ago Mary Yorke's father came to the rescue after the goal posts were vandalised the day before the Gunners played Swansea in 1968.

Students were blamed for the attack but the match went ahead thanks to Ron Terry's woodworking skills — and a record 32,786 fans packed into the old ground to watch the action.

The story of the emergency repair made the pages of the Evening Post, and the photo of Mr Terry from the paper has become a family memento.

Mrs Yorke said: "Dad was a massive Swans fan, and was a regular at the Vetch both watching games and helping out.

"He worked near the ground and they would often send for him if they needed jobs doing.

"He was very handy and could do most things — he was well known in Sandfields.

"Before the Arsenal game they found the goal posts had been vandalised — supposedly students had done it — and so they sent for my father."

Mr Terry worked as a coach builder for J&P Bevan on Clarence Terrace when the call came from staff at the nearby Vetch to save the cup tie.

Thanks to the handy Swans fan the game went ahead — though sadly the home team went down one-nil to the visitors.

The teams meet again this Sunday when the Gunners come to Liberty Stadium for a third round of the FA Cup.

Mrs York, from Murton, said the whole family shared her late father's passion for the Swans — including grandson Thomas who is currently serving with the Royal Welsh, but who goes to the Liberty when he is home on leave from the Army.

The grandmother-of-three said: "Dad was always a Swans fan, and the family share his love of the club.

"Hopefully the result against Arsenal will be different this time."

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