Alf Ramsey Knew My Grandfather

The greatest true-life football story ever told.

In 1909 a team of raggy-arsed miners from West Auckland in County Durham – most of whom had never left their home town – are mistakenly invited to represent England in the first ever world football competition in Turin.

Selling their possessions to pay for the trip they find themselves away from their home and families and out of their depth, culturally, financially and sportingly. Despite this the underdogs roll up their sleeves and take on the world, winning the trophy.

They went to Italy as miners and came back heroes.

Alf Ramsey Knew My Grandfather premiered at Durham’s Gala Theatre in April 2009. It transferred to Newcastle’s Theatre Royal in May 2010.

In 2012 four of the original cast returned to the show when it was produced with great success at Darlington’s Civic Theatre to help raise money for Darlington’s beleaguered football club.


“I adored this production… a glorious two hours of comedic genius. If there is any justice it will soon be playing to packed auditoriums up and down the country.” Newcastle Evening Chronicle

“Studded with working-class humour, high-brow wit and thought-provoking dialogue” Sunderland Echo

“Very funny, a brilliant, ball-busting occasion -  it may be easier to get a ticket for the Cup final but if you can, go quickly” Northern Echo

“Humbling and uplifting, laced with pathos, comedy, historical commentary but mostly enormous character, the brilliant dialogue and banter shine through, truly a winning performance” North East Live

“Hilarious, but it’s the engaging characters which make it such a success” The Journal

“A real triumph which perfectly brings back to life a forgotten episode and pitches it back into the 21st century floodlights. It’s very very funny as well.”

“A great night’s entertainment …bringing the theatre to a young, male audience who might otherwise be out of reach” Durham Times

“I would definitely recommend this to everyone. A brilliant play and really funny” Fly Me to the Moon (Middlesbrough fanzine)

“I urge everyone who has ever had a passing interest in the North East, football, local history or just great comedy to come and see this 2 hours of genuine laughter”

“A wonderful feel-good show, full of northern humour to give you a proper belly laugh.”