In november 1918, the first world war, which lasted four years and cost the lives of millions of people, came to an end. The consequences of the war plunged germany into a huge inflation and thus into a social crisis. However, the sports movement, which had been paralyzed for many years, was tentatively developing again. During this period, the bamberg referee group was founded.
"In 1919, at the suggestion of the FC bamberg, a preliminary meeting was held with various club representatives at the munchener hof, followed a few weeks later by the founding meeting with 18 participants. The first chairman at that time was josef stohr of the 1. FC bamberg", the group’s chronicle of more than 250 pages looks back on the first days of its now hundred-year history.
Rough group in upper franconia
Since then, a lot has happened: growth and successes were celebrated, stormy times had to be weathered – but what centenarian has only had sunny days in his life?? In any case, it is certain that the bamberg group quickly became the largest in upper franconia and today is one of the strongest in all of bavaria.
Starting with the 18 founding members, the numbers increased steadily, reaching a peak of 580, and currently there are about 430 members. Already after the second world war there were whistle blowers from bamberg, the later chairman hans wagner and hans loch, who in the following time became a district instructor, who were allowed to direct games in the highest league (at that time upper league south with teams like bayern munchen, eintracht frankfurt or waldhof mannheim).
Later, referees such as helmut fleischer, his father karl fleischer, siegfried brehm, robert schauer, gunther reitzner, reinhard lorenz, peter schirner and the two fifa referees gertrud gebhard (born in germany) made it to the top. Regus) and elke gunthner as well as with markus pflaum one who is still active – and provided for an excellent reputation of the bamberger referees.
But even those who did not, or will not, make it to the higher echelons of the whistle are at least as important: the grassroots referees who, week in, week out, in the lowest leagues, in wind and weather, reliably ensure the possibility of an orderly running of the game. Who may not be known beyond the region, but who are indispensable on the squares in and around bamberg. And who put themselves at the service of amateur football.
Troubled times too
The groups ebern (joined coburg-lichtenfels in 1992) and hochstadt/aisch (renamed steigerwald in 2006) were founded as subgroups in 1965 and 1966 respectively. In turbulent phases, there were sometimes upheavals, quarrels and resignations.
And the group even staggered for a short time. The chronicle quotes from a protocol in the mid-70s: "everyone shouts and wants to be right. The referee comrades almost wanted to beat each other." nevertheless, bamberg had by far the most qualified referees in the district at the beginning of the 80s.
At the turn of the millennium, the situation within the association was similarly turbulent. No wonder that it was the phase in which the bamberg association was known in association circles only as the "atom group" was called. The performance and quality of the referees was not affected by these quarrels.
Over the years, the meetings, events and lehrabende took place again and again in different locations and later in sports halls. For several years the bamberg referees have had a permanent home at SV dorfleins.
Stable in the second century
Numerous important heads shaped the history of the bamberg group on the field and/or as functionaries, including long-serving chairmen such as karl perl, rainer pflaum and gunther reitzner, who has led the group since 2006 and is now celebrating its 100th anniversary. Not to forget the referees, of whom josef waldl can boast the longest period of service. They and the countless other referees, who do not appear in any honorary or best list, have ensured that the group, even in a time marked by a shortage of referees, may enter the second century of its existence stable and healthy. As the people have changed over the years, so have the rules and the demands on the referees from just after the first world war to the digital age.
Hardly anyone can imagine today that the journey to the games had to be made by fub, by bicycle or at best by public transport. Nowadays, the referee could even, if he wanted to, enter the current scores directly online via cell phone. Between these developmental steps lay a long and sometimes rocky road. But no matter what demands this change made on the group, it had to move with the times – and it moved with the times.
In any case, one thing has not changed: without a good portion of idealism, it was just as impossible in 1919 as it is in 2019.
The jubilee year of the referee association
In the following months of the year, we will be working with our partner portal anpfiff.Info in regular intervals about well known and not so well known referee men and women, curiosities, events or developments – and so the jubilee year of the referee group bamberg will be celebrated. In addition, there are a number of festivities coming up, the following are the dates until the middle of the year. Saturday, 2. February: winter hike from 3 p.M. From wildensorg to altenburg and back, followed by a stop at gasthof heerlein. Friday, 15. Marz: schafkopf- and schnauzturnier at the FC baunach from 7 pm. Saturday, 27. April: information stand on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the association at grunen markt. Weekend, 10. – 12. May: new referee course at FC baunach. Saturday, 6. July: garden party at the home of chairman gunther reitzner in tuchenbach. Monday, 8. July: at the SV dorfleins takes place at 18.30 o’clock a referee-traditional game against the group forchheim with following barbecue takes place.