MY MOST MEMORABLE SEASON – Peter Taylor

    What was your most memorable season at Dartford?

    Honestly I had 4 very enjoyable and hopefully successful seasons at Dartford, because of results, entertainment, goals scored and attendance doubling to a 1000 people.

    Also worth saying that the club had been relegated the season before and it was my first job as a player manager. Thankfully the players we signed all gelled and had a very good spirit. Our first game was a friendly against Arsenal reserves and we lost 7-0!

    Was there a specific game that stood out during the season?  and Why?

    There were a number of special games during my time as manager. The ones that stood out were getting to the Trophy Semi Final twice and the Cup run. Winning the Kent cup twice. Winning the league cup against Bromsgrove at home after coming from 3-1 down (I missed 2 penalties over the 2 legs!!)

    You worked as a player/ manager at Dartford. Was it easy juggling the two?

    Being player manager helped me get over to the team what I expected, it was easier because I was 10 yards away from a situation.

    Who would you say was Dartford’s standout player that season?

    Andy Hessenthaler was absolutely fantastic. Good professional, good player, very very fit, wanted to win every game and wasn’t worried about money. He was a joy.

    Why do you think we did so well during the time at the club?

    Team spirit and a good team that were fit and that enjoyed being at the club.

    Do you have a favourite goal you scored that season?

    Thankfully I remember scoring a few and really enjoying them.

    Do you still keep in touch with any of the team from that season?

    I speak to Hessy and Terry Harris and I’ve spoken to Tony Burman, Steve Mosley, Mark Keen and Colin Sowerby. Happy memories.

    Did anything unusual happen that season that you can share with the fans?

    I remember some things,in that game we beat Bromsgrove in the league cup after they had a first leg lead. I got Joe Sullivan who was a GK coach to come in the changing room just before kick and make out Bromsgrove were having a picture done as if they had already won the cup and I think it made us even more determined .

    Also 2 things involving my very good assistant Terry Harris. The first he got so annoyed at one of our home games he kicked the dressing room door so hard he couldn’t get his foot out and the other one was he was doing a finishing session doing a one two with the players and Paul Blades who had a very powerful left foot hit Terry on the head so hard it knocked him backwards,it was so funny I still chuckle today.

    Dartford was your first managerial appointment and you have gone on to manage in the football league,  Premier League and the National team (as caretaker). Do you feel your experience at Dartford helped in your future career?

    I always look at Dartford as my first real experience and I know I learnt a lot.All levels teach you different things. I’ve been very lucky to have been at lots of levels and met some great people. I’ve appreciated all.

    Peter Taylor played 243(10) games for Dartford scoring 94 goals.

    Former England winger, Peter became one of the best known characters in the Southern League. An outstanding career with clubs like Southend United, Crystal Palace and Tottenham Hotspur won him four England caps and he gained England semi professional recognition after joining Maidstone United as player coach in 1984. He entered the Southern League with Chelmsford City and was voted Player of the Year in 1985 86. Dartford appointed him player manager in July 1986 and during his four year reign, Darts were twice runners up, twice won the Southern League Cup and reached the FA Trophy Semi Finals. He was virtually ever pre sent until leaving to manage Enfield in July 1990 and moved to assist Steve Perryman at Watford in July 1991. Went on to manage Southend, Gillingham Leicester City, Brighton, Hull City, Crystal Palace, Stevenage Borough and Wycombe Wanderers, Bradford City and Dagenham & Redbridge. He also managed England U21’s and caretaker manager of England.