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Jacko51

Chris Harper

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Like many others on here Chris was my link to the Vale when I first started following them in the mid 60's. His reports were eagerly awaited, avidly read and, in my early teens, often cut out and stuck in a scrap book; I still have those somewhere in the loft in Lichfield!

 

I never knew Chris personally, but in those pre-internet days the news articles he wrote brought the club to life and gave us all an insight into what went on behind the scenes.

 

It is his match reports I remember most fondly. I can still recall some of the wording I read all those years ago.... like John James "sinking to his knees as he hit a shot" (v Workington away in a cup replay) "but he was soon jumping for joy as the ball found the corner of the net" and then the report of the John Woodward inspired comeback at Shrewsbury where Vale were "roared on by a large following".

 

Made the waits at Rowley's or Nadin's paper shop for the late Sentinels to arrive on a Saturday worthwhile!

 

An important part of my life at that time.

 

Thanks Chris... and RIP.

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Very sad news indeed. He never "pulled his punches", was always fair and if you could not get to the game his report was a just reflection of the game and a tribute to his honesty. I seem to recall he was "banned" by the club for a short while because he printed something they did not like. I often thought what his reports and comments would have been on the last days of the "old regime" I am sure they would have made interesting reading.

 

He will be much missed.

 

My sentiments exactly.

 

I feel really sad at this news, it's like a little part of my formative years have gone with him.

 

RIP Chris, the route to the truth for many a Vale fan.

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Can only echo what others have said about Chris. As a lad I started watching vale as a serious fan, back in 1976. So keen was I, that I started a scrap book of Sentinel cuttings of all Chris Harpers match reports. Still got what amounted to 4 volumes of newspaper cuttings, all the way through to that promotion year in 1989. Still dig them out occasionally. Great memories.

So sorry to hear that Chris has passed away. Though I never met him, feels a bit like a member of the family has gone.

Chris RIP, and thanks for those memories

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A very sad loss indeed. Chris Harper had a very rare talent as reporters go, he told it how it was and the fans trusted and respected his work because of that. His byword was 'objectivity' rather than 'subjectivity' and the Vale were very lucky indeed to have such a class act working on their behalf.

 

I'm afraid you couldn't say the same for the other reporters on the Sentinel at the time, but the Vale reports were accurate and you knew exactly what had gone on. There was no cow-towing to the the Chairman or Manager, just good honest observation, description and assessment.

 

Thank you very much for your efforts Chris. I think the quality of this thread speaks volumes for how respected you were by all Vale fans. Rest in peace, mate. Condolences to his wife and family.

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