Leyton Orientear

“We are the major reason for there being football clubs in the first place. Without supporters there would be no clubs. It’s not as if we even threaten those who control the game and the clubs. They have to answer to no-one. Their position is unassailable. All we can do is put forward our views and possibly embarrass those who use their power poorly”
Dave Knight, Founding Editor of the Leyton Orientear, 1988

The Leyton Orientear is a fanzine written by Orient fans, for Orient fans, which comes out about once a month during the football season. The ‘Ear first hit the streets way back in September 1986 and some say it is the second longest-running fanzine in England after Bradford’s City Gent.

The impetus for the magazine came when stories emerged that the club had been close to folding that summer and some Orient regulars decided the best way to keep fans informed was through a fanzine.

It probably wasn’t intended to still be going now. But thanks to the hard work of previous editors Dave KnightSteve HarrisTom DaviesJamie StripeRory Macqueen Sean McNeillMatthew Arnott James Nichols and Pete Ranger the mag has been around ever since to report on two promotions, two relegations, eleven years in the bottom division, boardroom upheavals, stadium developments and various useless or insane (or both) managers.

 From time to time the Orientear involves itself with particular campaigns. Having started in the wake of the club nearly folding, the Orientear was involved in distributing leaflets in 1995 to encourage people to come to matches when it looked like the club would go under again. In other campaigns, the ‘Ear has advocated putting the ‘Leyton’ back into Orient FC; opposed the Tory Government’s ID card scheme (remember that?); done our best to combat racism and other prejudice in football; and bought shares in LOFC through the Leyton Orient Fans’ Trust.

Wherever the Os go from here, the ‘Ear will be covering the ups and downs with its longstanding editorial independence and usual doom and gloom style. Thanks from the current editors goes out to everyone who has contributed over the years and left us a fanzine in fine shape for the future. If you want to contribute an article, send a letter for the ‘Earache’ page, write a match report or send in your photos for publication, get in touch via the details below.