Western Football League
The Western Football League is a football league in South West England, covering Bristol, Cornwall, Devon, Somerset, western Dorset, parts of Gloucestershire and Wiltshire. The leagues current main sponsor is Toolstation, so it is known as the Toolstation League. The champion club may apply for promotion to a Step 4 league, below the Western League are four local leagues covering smaller areas, the Gloucestershire County League, the Somerset County League, the Dorset Premier League and the Wiltshire League. The South West Peninsula League Premier Division is also a feeder to the Western League but due to having Step 6 status, Premier Division, Division One, The league was formed in 1892 as the Bristol & District League, and became the Western League in 1895. In the years before World War II, many teams played in both the Southern and Western Leagues, the Western League was considered as secondary to the Southern League. On four occasions, member clubs have lifted the FA Vase, Tiverton Town twice, Taunton Town once and most recently Truro City, totton in 2007 at the first final to be held at the new Wembley Stadium before a competition record crowd of 27,754. Truro City were the one of the three to win the FA Vase while in Division One, while none are current members of the Western League. Bedminster | Clevedon | Clifton Association | Eastville Rovers | Mangotsfield | St. George | Trowbridge Town | Warmley | Wells Official Site Western League -Fixtures, Results and Tables
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
Bitton A. F. C. is a football club based in the South Gloucestershire suburb of Bitton, in England. Western League Premier Division they play at the Recreation Ground in Bath Road, the club is affiliated to the Gloucestershire County FA. They also have a team, Bitton Ladies, who play in the South West Womens League after completing the league. Although founded in 1892, little is known of the history before the Second World War. From 1945 until the late 1980s, the Bitton played in the Bristol, however, the club were promoted to the Bristol Premier Combination in 1990 and quickly moved to that leagues top division with 4 European campagins along the way. Western League Premier Division, Winners, 2008–09 Runners Up, 2010–11, 2011–12 Official site
Frome Town F.C.
Frome Town Football Club is an English football club based in Frome, a town in the county of Somerset. They play in the Southern Football League Premier Division, the clubs nickname is the Robins and they play in a predominantly red kit. After the league successes the club made its debut in the FA cup in the 1911–12 season reaching the fifth qualifying round before losing 4–1 to Southport Central. The club then joined the Western league in the 1919–20 season starting in Division two, where won the division at their first attempt. However they did not gain promotion and stayed in the league for a two seasons before leaving, only to return to Division two for another three seasons at the beginning of the 1924–25 season. The club returned to the Western league in the 1931–32 season and stayed there for eight seasons, during this time the Club had success in the Somerset Senior FA Cup, winning it in the 1932–22 and 1933–34 seasons. The club also played its first FA cup game for 35 years in the same season. The 1953–54 season, saw the club reach the First round of the FA cup where they were defeated by Football League side Leyton Orient in front of a crowd of 8,000. The same season saw the club gain promotion to Division one. The club however was relegated back to Division two four seasons later and left the Western league, at the end of their first season back in Division two to join the Wiltshire League. The club once again joined the Western league in the 1963–64 season, the club spent the next 32 seasons in the top division during which time they went on to become champions once during the 1978–79 season. At the end of the 1995–96 season the club was relegated to Division One, at the end of the 1999–00 season the club finished bottom of Division one but were spared relegation as the league was restructured that season. Two seasons later at the end of the 2001–02 campaign the club were Division One champions, in the 2003–04 campaign the club gained media attention when they asked local white witch Titania Hardie, to help improve their home form as they struggled at Badgers Hill. The witch blamed the Decor of the rooms, and once the club changed them the team won eight of their nine remaining home games. The club also achieved cup success that season when they beat Paulton Rovers 3–1 to win the Somerset Premier Cup. In their second season in Division One South and West the club gained promotion to the Premier Division when they beat Sholing 1–0 in the play-off final, the club has since remained in the Premier Division of the Southern Football League. Frome Town play their games at the Special Effect Stadium, Berkley Road, Frome, in 2012 the club added a new 250 seater stand to Badgers Hill, so that their ground would meet the requirements set out for the Southern Football League Premier Division. Note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules, players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality
Southern Football League
Together with the Isthmian League and the Northern Premier League it forms levels seven and eight of the English football league system. The structure of the Southern League has changed several times since its formation in 1894, the Premier Division is at step 3 of the National League System, and is a feeder division, mainly to the National League South but also to the National League North. Feeding the Premier Division are two divisions, Division One South & West and Division One Central, which are at step 4 of the NLS. These divisions are in turn fed by various regional leagues, professional football developed more slowly in Southern England than in Northern England. Additionally, a league, the Southern Alliance was founded in 1892, with seven clubs from the region. Nonetheless, another attempt was made to form the Southern League, a competition for both professional and amateur clubs was founded in 1894 under the initiative of Millwall Athletic. Initially only one division was envisaged, but such was the enthusiasm, the sixteen founder members were, 2nd Scots Guards withdrew before the first season started and were replaced by Southampton St Marys. Woolwich Arsenal attempted to add their reserve side to the second division, the Southern League soon became the dominant competition below The Football League in Southern and Central England. By the turn of the century a few of the Southern League sides began to rival the Football League in the FA Cup, Two Southern League clubs, Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur reached the final of the FA Cup around the turn of the century. Tottenham Hotspur are the club from below the 2nd level of English football to have won the FA Cup. The champions of the two leagues during this period met in the annual Charity Shield, in 1907, it accepted Bradford Park Avenue, a northern club, as a member, reflecting its senior position at the time. In 1920, virtually the top division of the Southern League was absorbed by the Football League to become that leagues new Third Division. A year later the Third Division was expanded and regionalised, the Third Division clubs from the previous season became the Third Division South, with the addition of the Third Division North. Of the original members, six – Gillingham, Luton Town, Millwall, Reading. For the next six decades, the Football League and Southern League would exchange a number of clubs as a result of the older leagues re-election process. From 1920 onward, the Southern Leagues status as a league was firmly established. In turn, the APL would eventually succeed in becoming a feeder to the Football League, the league lost more of its top clubs in 2004 when the Conference added two regional divisions below the existing National League, the Conference South and Conference North. The first sponsor of the Southern League was Beazer Homes who sponsored the league from 1987–96, the sponsors after Beazer Homes to the present day are, Dr Martens, British Gas, Zamaretto, Evo-Stik, Calor Gas, and Evo-Stik
Larkhall Athletic F.C.
Larkhall Athletic Football Club are a football club based in Larkhall, in Bath, Somerset, England. From 2014–15 they have playing in the Southern Football League Division One South & West. The club is affiliated to the Somerset County FA, the club was founded in 1914, and played local football until joining the Western League when it expanded to two divisions in 1976. They won promotion to the Western Football League Premier Division from the First Division for the first time in 2008–09 as champions and they had previously won the Division One title in the 1988–89 season but remained in Division One. In 2010–11, in only their second season at Premier level. They remained in the Premier Division for the 2011–12 season however, in 2014 they won the Western League double and progressed to the Southern League for the first time in club history. The Larks best FA Vase runs before the 2008–09 saw them reach the Second Round on three occasions, in the 2011–12 season, the surpassed their 2008–09 season by reaching the Fifth Round, but lost to Herne Bay. They equalled this feat in 2012–13, losing in the round to the eventual finalists Tunbridge Wells, and in 2013–14. Larkhall Athletic play their games at Plain Ham, Charlcombe Lane, Larkhall, Bath. The Larks also run a side, who play in the Somerset County League
Truro City F.C.
Truro City Football Club is an English football club based in Truro, Cornwall. They currently play in the National League South, the tier of the English football league system. They are the highest ranked club from Cornwall, the club had reached the same level in 2011, following five promotions in six seasons. However, they were relegated from the Conference South at the end of the 2012–13 season after going into administration and they were founding members of the South Western League in 1951 and won the title five times in their history. Truro were FA Cup regulars throughout the 1950s, but subsequently they were sporadic entrants until a permanent return to the competition in the 2006–07 season and they won the FA Vase in 2006–07. Their current manager is Lee Hodges who replaced Steve Tully in 2016, in 1889 Truro City became one of the founding members of the Cornwall County Football Association. Later in 1889, they played their first game at Truro School against Penzance and they then switched to Tolgarrick for their future games. Six years later in 1895, they won their first trophy, in the 1930s Truro left Cornish football for a time, joining the Plymouth and District League, which they went on to win in 1936–37. However, as a result of this switch, they were barred from competing the Cornwall Senior Cup, although they were re-admitted again in 1938. They were founding members of the South Western League in 1951, however, they won the championship five times since, and were only out of the division for three seasons when they lost their ground due to road widening. In the 2005–06 season, they finished runners-up in the South Western League and were promoted to the Western League Division One and they were faced with the longest travelling mileage of any club at their level due to the prevalence of Wiltshire-based clubs in the Western League. Truro is currently the only Cornish club playing in the top ten levels of the English football league system, for the remainder of the season, Director of Football Chris Webb took charge, assisted by former boss Dave Newton. Heaney owned a company and despite a recent slump in the housing market has continued to attract many players from higher leagues. Despite his housing company having gone into liquidation owing £4. 5m, he categorically denied claims that his money was drying up, in May 2008 former Plymouth Argyle and Exeter City striker Sean McCarthy was appointed the new Truro manager and the club appointed Dave Newton as his assistant. On 7 December 2009 Sean McCarthy left the club by mutual consent following a 7–2 away defeat to Stourbridge, on 22 December 2009 Truro signed Mangotsfield United midfielder Kyle Tooze, for an undisclosed fee, thought to be in the region of £5,000. June 2010 saw the appointment of yet another manager when Lee Hodges was appointed, on 23 April 2011, Truro were promoted as champions to the Conference South for the 2011–12 season with one league game remaining after a 3–0 win at Banbury United. After the troubled 2012–13 relegation season in which City nearly went out of business and he was replaced in June 2013 by Steve Massey, returning for his third spell as manager, having been in the post previously between 1992–94 and 2005–06. Massey was sacked on 12 March 2014 with City struggling in 19th place in the Southern Premier, the following day, Steve Tully was appointed player-manager at least until the end of the season
Odd Down A.F.C.
Odd Down Football Club are a football club based in Bath, England. They are currently members of the Western League Premier Division and play at the Lew Hill Memorial Ground, the club is affiliated to the Somerset County FA. As far as can be traced the club was founded in 1901 by Fred Weaver and brothers Walt, Odd Down, then a self-contained village on the outskirts of Bath in Somerset, played in the Bath and District Football League. In 1920 Odd Down won the Bath City Knockout Cup, Odd Down FC spent their formative years on pitches at Stirtingale Farm and at the Quarr Ground, before moving to Combe Hay Lane in the 1930s. Re-grouping after the war, Odd Down started off again in the Somerset Senior League and they also won the Mid-Somerset Football League that season, a league formed to make up for the shortage of Somerset Senior League fixtures at that time. Following a bad report into the facilities at Odd Down the club were expelled from the Somerset Senior League, a few years later the Wiltshire League voiced disapproval of Somerset-based teams competing in their league and Odd Down found themselves re-admitted to the Somerset Senior League. From 1967 to 1972 the club formed a committee which worked hard to provide a social club. The hard work paid off as Odd Down gained admittance to the Western Football League for the start of the 1977–78 season. In their centenary year of 2001 Odd Down reached the final of the Somerset Premier Cup for the first time, the feat was repeated in 2004, this time going down 5–0 to Yeovil Town at the club’s Huish Park home. They remained in the Premier Division until relegation to Division One in 2008, but were promoted back to the Premier Division in 2010, where they remain to this day. Odd Down play their games at Lew Hill Memorial Ground, Combe Hay Lane, Odd Down, Bath, Somerset