Goodbye Gully's Girls
After six years spanning two stadiums, one promotion and
five managers, Gully's Girls will dance for the last
time on Saturday 15th December 2012 with the visit of
their time working voluntarily for the club, the girls
have improved dramatically, become a key part of Albion
in the Community with cheer classes for schools and
raised a lot of money through calendars and other
All this wasn't enough to save the girls from the axe of
Paul Barber however, with the club remaining very quiet
on why they had to go - so ahead of their last Amex
performance, we caught up with one member of the group
who gave us the inside track on the end of Gully's
Girls were a popular part of The Amex experience -
so why have the club axed them?
The word on the street was that
it was down to the Jimmy Saville revelations that
the club decided to get rid of the girls. As
ridiculous as that sounds, our source states that
the reason the club have given the girls for their
disbanding is that
regarding their age and appearance they wanted to
change things up a little bit which was the initial
thinking behind the more commercial appearance a few
weeks back - the wearing of yellow hoodies and two
blokes dancing with the group.
Brighton and Hove Albion FC please note - just
because a majority of fans enjoy watching Gully's
Girls, it does not make us Jimmy Saville's.
"Gully's Group" lasted one dance - against Bolton -
before not being seen again. It's doubtful they'll
be back dancing at The Amex anytime soon.
Having gone from cheerleaders
who did lifts, proper dancing and on occasions even
fire eating, the reaction from the crowd to the new
group at the Bolton game may already have rendered
them done after one performance. There were audible
boos from the back of the North Stand for the two
blokes performing as they made their way around at
half time, and one of them almost certainly didn't
help his case by using the "hand cupped on ear"
gesture back to the supporters.
Our source said that the new
group will be known as the "fan engagement team" -
could it sound anymore corporate? - and that there
would not be a dance every week. When a performance
is needed, a local dance company called Streetfunk
will be bought in to perform the sort of poor mans
Diversity dance we had for the visit of Bolton.
changes to the group were made, the fans were told
it was exactly the same dancers but in a new style
and with a few blokes to be more inclusive. This
wasn't entirely the case.
Our source states that the
girls were offered the chance to remain a part of
the "fan engagement team" - but that only three of
the girls have decided to do so. Instead, they are
going their separate ways.
Some are seeking out local competitive cheer squads
and will be trying out later this month and some are
starting new troupes for corporate events. She added
that the girls would never join another club so you
won’t be catching the remaining members joining The
Crystals aka The Hammerettes - except one of
billed the Glenn Murray esque-move of Kate Fletcher
to The Hammeret....sorry, The Crystals, as being
based on the clubs axing of the group. This was
again not the case.
We have since been told that
when Kate left Gully's Girls, there were no plans to
change the group and it was her own decision to
leave. Kate is an ambitious singer and had informed
the girls of her upcoming record deal to which she
would be required to spend all her free time and
therefore would not be able to commit to the
vigorous training and performance schedule required
of Gully's Girls. Everybody in the troupe was in
support of her decision and wished her well for the
future, so to hear that she had infact joined The
Crystals came as something of a shock. FFS Fletcher.
So with this
being the end of the road for Gully's Girls, will we
ever see cheerleading again at The Amex?
Don't count on it. It's taken
Paul Barber less than half of his first season in
charge to axe the girls so all the while he remains
at the club it is unlikely we will see cheerleaders
in the proper sense performing on the pitch again.
Our source was slightly more diplomatic about the
situation, stating that we should never say never
but she wouldn't expect them to be returning as the
club will only move forward, consigning Gully's
Girls to a place in the Alion's history. She did add
that maybe in five years time there could be a
follow up - "Whatever happened to Gully's Girls?" -
which we are sure a lot of fans would be very
the highlights of the six years the girls have been
We enjoyed the fire eating
performances as it is hard to see any other club in
the country that would have cheerleaders doing that.
Seeing the girls up-close on the big screen once we
moved to The Amex was another big step forward
(again, please note, that does not make us Jimmy
Saville's) and their parades around the running
track at Withdean were at one point the highlight of
watching the Albion before Gus arrived.
it is the Withdean Years that is highlighted as the
most memorable by our contact. She said that the
girls enjoyed the sense of community they had when
performing there and for most it was the most
enjoyable time. She also mentioned that first game
at The Amex, before adding that is has been a really
honour for everybody to dance in front of the