Northern Football League
The Northern League is a mens football league in north east England for semi-professional and amateur teams. Having been founded in 1889, it is the oldest surviving football league in the world after the Football League and it contains two divisions, Division One and Division Two. Division One sits on the tier of the English football league system. These leagues cover County Durham, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, northern Cumbria, One of the top three teams of Division One may be eligible for promotion to Division One North of the Northern Premier League, subject to certain criteria. The Northern League ran as one of two major competitions in tandem with the professional Football League, Southern League and, since 1968. In 1974, amateur status was abandoned by the Football Association, ultimately, the Northern League remained out of the football pyramid until 1991, a decision that proved very costly to its status. The league declined throughout the 1980s as its leading clubs defected to other leagues within the football pyramid, Northern League clubs now compete for the FA Vase. The League had a sponsorship deal put in place by Brooks Mileson, owner of the Albany Group. In that year, Mileson announced that he had created a trust which would continue to sponsor the league throughout his lifetime, in 2008, however, the league announced that this sponsorship had come to an end, and it held a raffle to determine its next sponsor. Interested parties were invited to buy a stake in the raffle for £250, the winning stake was held by a local training company and the league was known as the skilltrainingltd Northern League from the 2008–09 season until the 2011–12 season. The league is sponsored by dehumidifier manufacturer Ebac. Level 11 clubs from the Northern Football Alliance, Teesside Football League, originally the league comprised a single division. The champions were as follows, In 1897, the league split into two divisions. In 1900, the league reverted to a single division, in 1905 the league split into two sections, one for professionals and one for amateurs. This lasted for a single season, in 1906 the league reverted to a single division, a format retained until 1982. In 1982 the league added a second division
Bishop Auckland F.C.
Bishop Auckland Football Club is a football club based in Bishop Auckland, County Durham, England. They are one of the most successful sides, having won the FA Amateur Cup ten times. Nicknamed The Bishops or The Two Blues, they are rivals with West Auckland Town, the club are currently members of the Northern League Division One and play at Heritage Park. The founding students chose Cambridge and Oxford Blue as the colours to reflect the origins of the new team. A later dispute caused a breakaway team called Auckland Town in 1886, in 1889 Auckland Town were one of the 10 founding members of the Worlds second-oldest football league – the Northern League. The inaugural season was uneventful with the team finishing 8th with the leagues first winners being St. Augustines. Between the years of 1891 and 1893 the team never participated in league football, the team name was changed in 1893 to Bishop Auckland and it was under this name that the football club rejoined the Northern League. The following two seasons under the new name were again uneventful as the finished third bottom on both occasions. During the 1895–96 season Bishop Auckland won their first silverware on a national scale – the Amateur Cup – defeating Royal Artillery Portsmouth 8–0 in the final. Over the following few seasons the team improved their league position. It was also during 1899 that Bishop Auckland picked up their second Durham County Challenge Cup, after the war, Bishop Auckland picked up where they left off finishing as league runners-up to South Bank in 1919–20, winning the following season and runners-up again the following two seasons. During this time the Amateur Cup was added twice more with wins over Swindon Victoria, the next honour was won nearly a decade later when the league championship was added in 1931 along the Durham County Challenge Cup. In 1935 the Amateur Cup final was reached again with Wimbledon being defeated 2–1 in a replay after the tie finished goalless after extra time. The Bishops had perhaps their best-ever season in 1938–39 when they completed a treble, future Liverpool player and manager Bob Paisley played at right-back in the team which won the Northern League title, the Durham County Challenge Cup and the FA Amateur Cup. The Amateur Cup final was played in Durham at Roker Park where the Bishops defeated Wellington 3–0 after extra time, following WWII, Bishop Auckland reached the Amateur Cup final for the eleventh time but went down 3–2 against Barnet. The following season, 1946–47, another Northern League title was added with Crook Colliery Welfare runners-up, the team were runners-up the following two seasons, to Ferryhill Athletic and Evenwood Town respectively. The 1950s were to be Bishop Aucklands best with the Northern League title won in the first three seasons with Billingham Synthonia being the runners-up on each occasion. Bishop and Willington both reached the final of the Amateur Cup in 1950, Willington producing a shock to triumph 4–0 over their more glamorous neighbours, the following season the Amateur Cup final was reached again
Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played between two teams of eleven players with a spherical ball. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies making it the worlds most popular sport, the game is played on a rectangular field with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by getting the ball into the opposing goal, players are not allowed to touch the ball with their hands or arms while it is in play, unless they are goalkeepers. Other players mainly use their feet to strike or pass the ball, the team that scores the most goals by the end of the match wins. If the score is level at the end of the game, the Laws of the Game were originally codified in England by The Football Association in 1863. Association football is governed internationally by the International Federation of Association Football, the first written reference to the inflated ball used in the game was in the mid-14th century, Þe heued fro þe body went, Als it were a foteballe. The Online Etymology Dictionary states that the word soccer was split off in 1863, according to Partha Mazumdar, the term soccer originated in England, first appearing in the 1880s as an Oxford -er abbreviation of the word association. Within the English-speaking world, association football is now usually called football in the United Kingdom and mainly soccer in Canada and the United States. People in Australia, Ireland, South Africa and New Zealand use either or both terms, although national associations in Australia and New Zealand now primarily use football for the formal name. According to FIFA, the Chinese competitive game cuju is the earliest form of football for which there is scientific evidence, cuju players could use any part of the body apart from hands and the intent was kicking a ball through an opening into a net. It was remarkably similar to football, though similarities to rugby occurred. During the Han Dynasty, cuju games were standardised and rules were established, phaininda and episkyros were Greek ball games. An image of an episkyros player depicted in low relief on a vase at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens appears on the UEFA European Championship Cup, athenaeus, writing in 228 AD, referenced the Roman ball game harpastum. Phaininda, episkyros and harpastum were played involving hands and violence and they all appear to have resembled rugby football, wrestling and volleyball more than what is recognizable as modern football. As with pre-codified mob football, the antecedent of all football codes. Non-competitive games included kemari in Japan, chuk-guk in Korea and woggabaliri in Australia, Association football in itself does not have a classical history. Notwithstanding any similarities to other games played around the world FIFA have recognised that no historical connection exists with any game played in antiquity outside Europe. The modern rules of football are based on the mid-19th century efforts to standardise the widely varying forms of football played in the public schools of England
Northern England or the North of England, also known as the North Country or simply the North, is the northern part of England, when considered as a single cultural area. The area roughly spans from the River Trent and River Dee to the Scottish border in the north, Northern England roughly comprises three statistical regions, the North East, North West and Yorkshire and the Humber. These have a population of around 14.9 million as of the 2011 Census. The region has been controlled by groups from the Brigantes. After the Norman conquest in 1066, the Harrying of the North brought destruction, a Council of the North was in place during the Late Middle Ages until the Commonwealth after the Civil War. The area experienced Anglo–Scottish border fighting until the unification of Britain under the Stuarts, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the economy of the North was dominated by heavy industry such as weaving, shipbuilding, steelmaking and mining. The deindustrialisation that followed in the half of the 20th century hit Northern England hard. For government and statistical purposes, Northern England is defined as the covered by the three statistical regions of North East England, North West England and Yorkshire and the Humber. This definition will be used in article, except when otherwise stated. Using historic county boundaries, the North is generally taken to comprise Cumberland, Northumberland, Westmorland, County Durham, Lancashire and Yorkshire, the Isle of Man is occasionally included in definitions of the North, although it is politically and culturally distinct from England. Additionally, some areas of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire have been associated with the North. The geographer Danny Dorling includes most of the West Midlands and part of the East Midlands in his definition of the North, conversely, more restrictive definitions also exist, typically based on the extent of the historical Northumbria, which exclude Cheshire and Lincolnshire. Personal definitions of the North vary greatly and are sometimes passionately debated, when asked to draw a dividing line between North and South, Southerners tend to draw this line further south than Northerners do. Various towns have been described as or promoted themselves as the gateway to the North, including Crewe, Stoke-on-Trent, through the North of England run the Pennines, an upland chain often referred to as the backbone of England. This stretches from the Cheviot Hills on the border with Scotland to the Peak District, the geography of the North has been heavily shaped by the ice sheets of the Pleistocene era, which often reached as far south as the Midlands. On the other side of the Pennines, a glacial lake forms the Humberhead Levels, a large area of fenland which drains into the Humber. This has left the North a region of contrasts, the Lake District includes Englands highest peak, Scafell Pike, which rises to 978 m, its largest lake, Windermere, and its deepest lake, Wastwater. However, dense areas have emerged along the coasts and rivers
Darlington 1883 is an English football club that plays at Blackwell Meadows, Darlington. This policy had previously applied to other collapsing clubs, such as Chester City FC. Darlington applied to join the Northern League as a new club, a deadline imposed by the FA meant the board was unable to wait for the results of a poll of supporters, so the name Darlington 1883 was chosen. The company Darlington 1883 Limited was incorporated on 18 Jan 2012 by owners of Darlington Football Club and this company then went on to purchase the assets of Darlington F. C. on 3 May 2012 when a CVA could not be agreed with creditors. Darlington Football Club itself was founded in 1883, and became a football club in 1908. The club became a member of the Football League in 1920, in which it competed until 1989, in the 1989–90 season and from 2010 to 2012, Darlington played in the Football Conference. The club was taken over by Darlington1883, a group of local fans. Darlington1883 failed to arrange a CVA, and as such on 21 June 2012 Darlington F. C. ceased to exist, an appeal against the FA decision was inevitably rejected, confirming that the new club would not be able to play as Darlington F. C. On 25 June 2012 the new registration of a new club. In March 2013 it was confirmed that the Darlington Football Club Community Interest Company and this made the club 100% fan and community owned, with 26% owned by the Darlington 1883 Supporters Club and 22% by 22 individual fans. Following a successful first season in the Northern League Division One, Darlington 1883 were crowned champions with a haul of 122 points. As a result, Darlington 1883 were promoted to the Northern Premier League Division One North, even though Darlington 1883 are a new club, they are committed to paying the former clubs debt including a recent payment of £53,000 to HMRC. Darlington played in the Northern Premier League Division One North for the 2013–14 season, in the 2013–14 season, Darlington finished 2nd and qualified for the playoffs, where they were beaten in the semifinal by Ramsbottom United. Ramsbottom went on to win the final and achieve promotion, in the 2014–15 season, Darlington again finished 2nd and on 2 May 2015 they won the playoff final 2–0 against Bamber Bridge to win promotion to the Northern Premier League Premier Division. In the 2015–16 season, Darlington clinched the Northern Premier League Premier Division title on 21 April 2016 after beating Whitby Town 7–1 to seal promotion to the National League North. Norman Stephens and some of the staff were retained by Darlington who took Hordens place in the Wearside League. They played their first game under the new name on 6 October in a 1–0 away defeat to Boldon C. A, plans had originally been laid down to move to Shildon Football Club, but Heritage Park was eventually chosen as Darlingtons first official home. Heritage Park is south-west of Bishop Auckland, the attendance was exactly 3,000 at Blackwell Meadows
Crook Town A.F.C.
Crook Town Association Football Club is a football club based in Crook, County Durham, England. They are currently members of the Northern League Division Two and play at the Sir Tom Cowie Millfield, the club won the FA Amateur Cup five times. Crook Town Football Club was formed in 1889 by a merger of Crook and Crook Excelsior and they initially only played friendly and cup matches until Crook Cricket Club took over the club in 1894. A successful application was made to join the Bishop Auckland and District League, with the clubs first league match plaued on 15 August 1894. They were league runners-up in 1895–96, and at the end of the season they joined the Northern League, in 1897–98 the league gained a second division, with Crook becoming members of Division One. They finished bottom of the division and were due to part in promotion/relegation play-off matches. However, an outbreak of smallpox in the Middlesbrough area had prevented the club finishing their league fixtures and they finished bottom of Division One the following season, but there was no relegation. In 1900–01 the club won the FA Amateur Cup, defeating Kings Lynn 3–0 in a replay at Ipswich after a 1–1 draw at Dovercourt in Essex, in 1908 Crook successfully applied to join the North Eastern League. However, shortly before the start of the 1908–09 season the club decided to remain in the Northern League, in 1913 the club made the first of three tours to Spain where games were played against Barcelona. Subsequent tours were undertaken in 1921 and 1922, in all Crook played Barcelona ten times, winning two, drawing four and losing four. Jack Greenwell, a native of Crook who played on the first tour, jack went on to manage Barcelona and the Spanish national team before coaching all over the world during the 1930s. In 1914–15 Crook won their first Northern League title, in 1926–27 the club reached the first round of the FA Cup for the first time. After beating Workington 2–1, they lost 2–0 at Third Division North Southport in the second round and they had also reached the first round of the FA Cup, losing 8–2 at Third Division North Rochdale. Crook were re-constituted in the summer of 1928 and after being refused entry to the Northern League and they were accepted back into the Northern League in 1929, but a year later decided to turn professional and joined the North Eastern League under the name Crook. In 1931–32 the club reached the first round of the FA Cup again, the club struggled on until World War II and the Northern League closed down in 1940. In 1943 Hole in the Wall Colliery and Peases West Welfare merged to form Crook Colliery Welfare, when the Northern League resumed in 1945, the new club took the place of Crook Town, whose name they adopted in 1949. In 1952–53 they won the Northern League, and the season they won the FA Amateur Cup again. In 1958–59 they won the league and reached the FA Amateur Cup for the third time and they won the Cup again in 1961–62 with a 4–0 win over Hounslow Town in a replay, and the following season won the Northern League title
Scarborough Football Club was an association football club based in the seaside resort of Scarborough, North Yorkshire. They were one of the oldest football clubs in England, formed in 1879, before they were wound up on 20 June 2007, in the 2006–07 season Scarborough competed in the Conference North. They started the season with a 10-point deduction, for a breach of league rules and their last ever game, on 28 April 2007, was a 1–0 win at Hucknall Town. A new club was established by the Seadog Trust under the banner Scarborough Athletic on 25 June 2007, the club was formed in 1879 by members of the towns cricket team, and played their earliest games at the cricket ground in North Marine Road. The football club moved to the nearby Recreation Ground. Scarborough first entered Englands national cup competition, the FA Cup in 1887, before the club became professional they spent their time competing in the Northern League. It was in 1927 the Yorkshire club became professional and joined the Midland League, after only three years they became champions of it, breaking the record for most points in a season. The same year, the club were performing respectably in the FA Cup, Club attendance records were broken when the club reached the same stage of the FA Cup again, during the 1937–38 season. The game against Luton Town, which was a 1–1 draw, saw 11,162 people packed into the Athletic Ground, unfortunately for Scarborough they were soundly defeated 5–1 in the replay. Because of their decent performance in the Midlands League, the club were entitled to one of the founding clubs in the new Northern Premier League in 1968. The 1970s would prove to be a time for the club. However, there was also a tragedy for the club during the 1970s, on 18 May 1977, 21-year-old winger Tony Aveyard died after collapsing as a result of a head injury suffered in a match two days earlier. The 1970s also saw the club performing well in the FA Cup and they reached the Third Round in the 1975–76 season before losing 2–1 to Crystal Palace in a match that was featured on BBCs Match of the Day. During the 1977–78 season, they reached these heights again, with a Third Round clash against Brighton and Hove Albion and they also took part in the Anglo-Italian Cup twice, beating Udinese 4–0 in 1976 and then beating Parma 2–0 during the following years competition. In 1976 they lost 4–1 on aggregate to Italian side US Lecce in the match of the Anglo-Italian Semiprofessional Tournament. By the end of the 1970s, Scarborough had been selected to be part of the new Alliance Premier League and they stayed in this league for several seasons with generally consistent finishing positions in mid-table. The club gained a new manager named Neil Warnock, and his team became champions of the Conference in 1987 and they were automatically promoted into the Football League, the first club to achieve this feat by this route. In 1987 Scarborough were promoted into the Football League Fourth Division, the club had mixed fortunes during their stay in the Football League