Ashwater Press: an independent voice for Fulham’s history
Trust members and fans of Fulham in general will be familiar with the range of books from Ashwater Press, including the ‘Tales from the Riverbank’ volumes and the fine tome on Johnny Haynes. For some years, Ashwater have attempted to broaden the scope of their retail outlets, including those of the club itself. It is debatable whether any of their books will (or would have) detracted from any club product, aside from being considerably better-researched and without the embarrassing factual errors that are commonplace in official publications. Regrettably, the club has placed a number of obstacles in the way of any progress, including some financial demands that are both unreasonable and punitive. In a detailed statement, which is attached, Martin Plumb and Ken Coton explain why they believe they have reached an impasse with the club.
It is difficult to avoid the impression that the senior management at Fulham Football Club neither understands, nor has any serious knowledge of, Fulham’s rich and chequered history, but believes that it should be used only as sales support to market ‘brand product’, presumably to those that consider that Fulham’s history commenced in 1997. A perhaps more disturbing aspect is the apparent, but unstated, desire for control of the reporting of Fulham’s history by corporate personnel whose turnover is high and tenure brief. The Club’s loyal, often long-suffering, fans are the guardians of its history and those more recent its inheritors. This history is best recounted by diligent researchers, those who are independent of ‘brand’ pressures and the need to promote revisionary accounts.
Among several items in preparation or in a state of near-completion are volumes 3 and 4 of ‘Tales from the Riverbank’, ‘Keegan’s Kingdom’ (celebrating the 1999 Champions side) and ‘40 years of Fulham in Colour’. Trust members are urged to read the statement from Ken and Martin on our web-site and look for publication announcements on that of Ashwater Press (http://www.ashwaterpress.co.uk/).