‘A bond lasting longer than some marriages’ – catch former Loaded editor James Brown talking about his football book Above Head Height

PUBLISHED: 09:37 03 June 2017 | UPDATED: 09:37 03 June 2017

Above Head Height by James Brown

Above Head Height by James Brown


A legend of journalism will be taking part in the literary festival in North London this weekend to talk about his critically-acclaimed and hugely successful book on five-a-side football.

If you love five-a-side you'll love James Brown book Above Head Height. Credit: @laythy29 instagramIf you love five-a-side you'll love James Brown book Above Head Height. Credit: @laythy29 instagram

Former Loaded editor, broadcaster and supremo of the Sabotage Times website, James Brown, will be speaking about his tome Above Head Height at the Stoke Newington Literary Festival tomorrow.

After the death of 5-a-side team mate, James realised how his weekly kick about had provided an incredibly strong bond to a group of men he only knew by their nicknames.

In Above Head Height, James explores the relationships that this game can create and also the universality of the amateur football experience.

Talking to popular sports broadcaster Danny Kelly, expect to be regaled with a whole host of amusing and heartwarming footballing anecdotes that anyone who loves our beautiful – and maddening – game will love. Jumpers for goalposts? There will be all – over Clissold Park and beyond.

Speaking to the Guardian earlier in the year James said: “People play at schools, in sports centres, on specialised branded five-a-side pitches in organised leagues with turnovers of up to £32m a year – five-a-side it’s everywhere.

“The only sign of action is the green glow of the pitch, the frantic shouts of “man on” and the tell-tale sign of a player walking through the streets in shorts and a large winter coat.

“It was only when our game’s organiser, James Kyllo, died in late 2015, that I started to think about the unique relationships that exist in the five-a-side family.

“Dads play with lads, and brothers get to tackle each other over the artificial grass or hard wooden floors, but the connection goes beyond blood.

“It’s a bond that lasts longer than relationships, marriages and jobs, it manages to be intensely personal but also relatively anonymous.”

James Brown will be talking about his superb new book Above Head Height from 3pm tomorrow at Abney Hall, Church Street, Stoke Newington. Tickets £6.

The book has had rave reviews with Tony Parsons calling it ‘the Fever Pitch of five-a-side.’

For more on the large numbers of authors taking park in the Stoke Newington Literary Festival visit

To buy James’ book in time for Father’s Day go to

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