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
Bishop Sutton A.F.C.
Bishop Sutton Association Football Club are a football club based in Bishop Sutton, Somerset, near Bristol, England. They are currently members of the Western League Division One and play at Lakeview and they were officially established in 1977, although it is actually a reformed version of a club that dated from the early 1900s. Bishop Sutton joined the Western Football League in 1991 after playing in the Somerset County League and prior to that the Bristol, a title in the 1997–98 season in Division One earned the club a promotion to the Premier Division, where they have played ever since. They reached the 3rd round of the FA Vase in the 1995–96 season, the club is affiliated to the Somerset County FA. The club became champions of the Western League Premier Division for the first time in its winning the league by a six-point margin. The 2012–13 season saw the club become champions of the Western Football League, however, they were not promoted to the Southern Football League, as they never applied to be promoted. Bishop Sutton play their games at Lakeview, Wick Road, Bishop Sutton
Sherborne Town F.C.
Sherborne Town Football Club are a football club based in the town of Sherborne, Dorset, England. They are currently members of the Western League Premier Division and play at Raleigh Grove, the club is affiliated to the Dorset County Football Association and is a FA chartered Standard club. The club was founded in 1894 and played their matches at Marston Road, just before the Second World War the club moved to the Terrace playing fields. The club then moved again in 1985 to their present home of Raleigh Grove. In 1962, they joined the Dorset Combination, in the season 2003-4 the club had improved its facilities off the pitch, with floodlights and a 150-seater stand being installed. They also finished fourth in the league season and won the Dorset Senior County Cup. An application was made to join the Western League but the Dorset Premier League refused to grant consent, the 2005–06 campaign saw the club able to re-enter the FA Vase again. At the end of the season finished second in the Dorset Premier Football League. After finishing 4th in 2006–07, they finished runners-up in 2007–08 – gaining promotion to the Western League Premier Division. That season also saw the club make its debut in the FA Cup, the club remained in the Premier Division until the end of the 2011–12 season, when they finished second from bottom, forcing them to be relegated back to Division one. The club bounced back up to the Premier Division at the first attempt when they finished as Champions of Division one, Sherborne Town play their home games at Raleigh Grove, Terrace Playing Fields, Sherborne, DT9 5NS. The Raleigh Grove site was built on a field with a pond in the far right corner of the ground. The pitch also had four drains laid to aid the playing surface, the record attendance at the ground is 1,000 versus Eastliegh, in the Andy Shephard Memorial match on 27 July 2003. Four Football League clubs have played at Raleigh Grove, Plymouth Argyle, Torquay United, Swindon Town, note, Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, players that have played/managed in the football league or any foreign equivalent to this level. Chris Giles Official Website Sherborne Town at the Football Club History Database
Merthyr Town F.C.
Merthyr Town Football Club is a Welsh semi-professional football club based in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales. The club will play in the Southern Football League Premier Division, Merthyr Town were founded in 1909 and played in the Football League during the 1920s, but the club folded in 1934 and were replaced by new formed Merthyr Tydfil F. C. in 1945. In 2010, the club reformed again after Merthyr Tydfil FC was liquidated, after finishing third in 1911–12 the club were promoted to the first division, though they were relegated back to the second division in 1913–14. The Southern League did not operate during the First World War, in the summer of 1920 the Football League expanded with the creation of a new Third Division, which was made up entirely of the First Division of the Southern League from the previous season. Despite having finished bottom in season before, usually a relegation place. In their first season in the Football League, the club had a better season. This, however, proved to be their most successful league season, from then on the club declined further, and finished bottom of the Third Division in 1924–5. Although they finished 14th in 1925–6, in the seasons the club finished 17th, 21st, 20th and then bottom again. They were replaced by the ill-fated Thames, during their penultimate season in the Football League the club had their best season in the FA Cup, getting past the first round for the only time, before losing to Watford in the second round. The club dropped back into the Southern League, but lasted four seasons. In 2010, Merthyr Tydfil F. C. of the Southern Football League Premier Division were liquidated despite finishing the 2009–10 season 17th of 22 clubs. The club was reformed under the name of Merthyr Town and consequently were required to drop three divisions to begin the 2010–11 season in the Western Football League Division One. The club was forced to switch grounds, and left Penydarren Park to take Rhiw Dda’r. In their first season they won Division One and were promoted to the Western League Premier Division, the newly promoted club once again called Penydarren Park home. Their first match back at their ground was a 1–9 defeat to Welsh Premier League side Llanelli in a pre-season friendly in July 2011. However Merthyr went on to secure a consecutive championship and with it promotion to the Southern League. On 6 April 2015, Merthyr Town were promoted back to the Southern League Premier Division only five years after being expelled, the club is fully owned by the supporters trust. As of 02 February 2017 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
Corsham Town F.C.
Corsham Town Football Club is a football club based in Corsham, Wiltshire, England. The Western League Division One and play at Southbank, Corsham Town was founded in 1884 and affiliated to the Football Association in 1893. The club had to wait just over sixty years before it had won anything, winning the Wilts Junior Cup in the 1946–47 season. Four seasons later the club entered the FA Cup for the first time making it to the first qualifying round in its first attempt, in the 1960–61 season the club won its second honour winning the Wiltshire League Division two, fourteen years after their first honour. In 1976 they became founding members of the Wiltshire Football League, during their first Season in the new county league the club won the Wiltshire Senior Cup and were promoted to the top division in the league. His was a short tenure, and Lock was followed by Peter Tripp who led the club to becoming champions for the first time in 1997–98, in an impressive first season, Gingells young charges finished fifth in the league, despite a lengthy touchline ban for the new manager. The club then remained in the Premier Division until the 2011–12 season where upon finishing 18th they were relegated back to Division One under new manager Trevor Rawlings. Rawlings led the club to a finish in their first season back in the First Division. Corsham Town play their games at Southbank Ground, Lacock Road, Corsham, SN13 9HS. A Cup best Performance, Second qualifying round 2004–05. Vase best performance, Third round 2006–07 Official Site Corsham Town at the Football Club History Database
Buckland Athletic F.C.
Buckland Athletic Football Club is a football club based in Newton Abbot, Devon, England. Buckland Athletic is a FA chartered Standard Club, the club are currently members of the Western League Premier Division and play at Homers Heath. Established in 1977, and started playing in the Torbay Pioneer League at Sandringham Park, the club then moved to Senior Division Three of the Devon and Exeter Football League for the 1987-88 season, and moved to Coach Road. The club immediately gained promotion as champions of Division Three, the club then moved grounds again to Decoy Park for the 1990-91 season, but two seasons later moved to Homers Lane in Kingsteignton, which later was renamed Homers Heath. The move to the new ground proved successful as the club gained promotion to the division of the Devon. The club under the management of Nigel Holmes and Roger Madge, the club then went on to win the title again under manager Shaun Bartlett in the 1990-2000 season, which allowed the club to gain promotion to the Devon County League. They maintained membership of the Devon County League, with a best position of second in their debut season, the club after finishing third in the 2008-09 season, and went on to win the title twice in a row in the following two seasons. During their first championship winning season the club made their debut in the FA Cup. After finishing as Runners-up the club managed to gain promotion to the Western Football League for the 2012–13 season. Buckland Athletic play at Homers Heath, Kingskerswell Road, Newton Abbot, the ground has won twice the South West Peninsula football League award for best Premier Division ground in 2008 and 2009. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality, players that have played/managed in the football league or any foreign equivalent to this level. Shaun Hadley Ellis Laight Alex Jeanin Official club website