I had no idea it had been in use that long.I’m old enough, no bad gang related violence in 1950’s. It got really bad in mid 1960’s.
Sunderland have historically had supporters in North Tyneside/Northumberland. So that’s not mags putting flags out for us. I used to drink in the Coronation club in Wallsend on a Friday afternoon when the yards came out in early 70’s and you would see Sunderland there but mainly mags.
In 74 it was a case of wanting anybody to beat the Mags. ( as now ) I can never remember either set of fans supporting the other. You used to get loads of men who would go to each home game, Roker Park and SJP each week but most that I knew supported one team - Sunderland. Newcastle was known as a terrible ground for being able to see.I also knew men in Fenham who went to both.
When Sunderland played Man Utd in March 64, in the FA cup relay, police estimated 150,000 trying to get in about 5pm.The roads from Gateshead to Sunderland were at a standstill, jam packed, also Durham to Sunderland. I was there from mid afternoon for 7-30 ko , badly crushed and never got in.Gates were locked and eventually collapsed due to pressure.
Those in the traffic queues would never make it to join the throng.
FYI I had FTM on my haversack in 1967, still got it.